First Line Friday – 02.15.19

first-line-friday-3Hey Everyone! It’s First Line Friday. So grab a book near you and share the first line in the comments below!

Today I’m sharing the first line from Between Stairs and Stardust by Pepper Basham. Between Stairs and Stardust is Pepper’s contribution to Finding Ever After: four fairytale-ish novellas which just released yesterday!

Finding Ever After

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Here is the first line:

Sunset and sunrise captured the magnificent country chateau best.

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Stella Faye Emory has known a life of loss. Orphaned at the age of eleven, she is sent from her home at the Biltmore Estate to become a companion for a wealthy family in Boston. As she grows into a kind and talented young lady, a benefactress recognizes Stella’s artistic skills and funds her education but Stella’s fame as an illustrator inspires jealousy and an unwanted rumor that sends Stella fleeing back to the Biltmore.

James Craven is the second-born son of an automobile tycoon. Following his family to their new estate in the Blue Ridge Mountains, James finds his place among the forests and mountains of the countryside. When his little sister is saved from drowning by the mysterious, “Faye”, James’ interests take a new turn in the direction of this fairy-like artist who seems to appear and disappear at the most unexpected times.

As James and Stella’s friendship deepens, Stella’s past finds her and threatens her newfound romance. Can a charm bracelet and an unanticipated visitor restore hopes for a happily-ever-after?

AMAZON

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Now it’s your turn to grab the book nearest you and leave a comment with the first (or your favorite) line!

Then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating:

First Line Friday – 02.08.19

first-line-friday-3Hey Everyone! It’s First Line Friday. So grab a book near you and share the first line in the comments below!

Today I’m sharing the first line from A Return of Devotion by Kristi Ann Hunter, the recently released second book in her Haven Manor series. Having thoroughly enjoyed the first book in this series, I am eagerly looking forward to crossing this one off my TBR list.

A Return of Devotion

Here is the first line:

Marlborough, England
1816

She should have been prepared.

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Daphne Blakemoor was perfectly happy living in her own secluded world for twelve years. She had everything she needed–loved ones, a true home, and time to indulge her imagination. But when ownership of the estate where she works as a housekeeper passes on, and the new marquis has an undeniable connection to her past, everything she’s come to rely upon is threatened.

William, Marquis of Chemsford’s main goal in life is to be the exact opposite of his father. Starting a new life in the peace and quiet of the country sounds perfect until his housekeeper turns his life upside down.

They’ve spent their lives hiding from the past. Can they find the courage to face their deepest wounds and, perhaps, find a new path for the future together?

AMAZON

Click HERE to follow my blog and make sure you don’t miss out on any of my upcoming reviews and other fun posts!

Are you a Kathleen’s Readers’ Club member? It’s free (of course) and KRC members receive exclusive content, are eligible for exclusive seasonal book giveaways, and more! Join Today!

Now it’s your turn to grab the book nearest you and leave a comment with the first (or your favorite) line!

Then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating:

With All My … Impossibilities

Do Not Be Afraid - Bible Journaling Line Art

This morning as I was listening to my audible devotional, I felt God impress upon me a certain truth:

He is God of the impossible.

What does this mean?

It means that while we are not to walk blindly into trouble, we can face trouble without fear because HE is our God.

It means that when faced with seemingly impossible odds, we need not lose hope, because HE is our God.

It means that He is not bound by the laws of this world. He can make the dead rise. He can feed a multitude with less than it takes to feed a few. He can turn water into wine. He can heal the gravely sick. He can bless our efforts with abundance beyond expectation. He can protect us from evil. He can forgive even the darkest of sins.

Whatever we are facing. Whatever we have been through. Whatever we are striving for. He is with us through it all. His love is there to comfort us. His strength is there to support us. His wisdom is there to guide us. His grace is there to bless us.

We are not alone. We are with the God of the impossible.

Just a small part of the scriptures that help bring this point home:

Exodus – Chapter 14

Daniel – Chapter 3

Daniel – Chapter 6

Matthew – Chapter 14

Mark – Chapters 15 & 16

Luke – Chapter 5 verses 1-26

John – Chapter 11 verses 1-44

 

If you know someone who needs this reminder right now, please share this post.

TWEETABLE:

We are not alone. We are with the God of the impossible.

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Creating A Sense of Place – Guest Post by Pepper Basham

I am so excited to welcome Pepper Basham to my blog this week for a special guest post!


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One of my favorite parts of writing is creating a sense of place. It’s what I look for in my favorite books too. Do you know what I mean? That ability to ‘feel’ as if you’ve really traveled to a location you’ve only read about? I recently enjoyed that wonderful ‘place traveling’ by reading Laura Frantz’s newest novel, A Bound Heart. Wow! What a wonderful trip to Scotland!!

In my newest release, My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge, I invite readers to travel with Jonathan Taylor to Maple Springs, North Carolina, a small mountain community in the Blue Ridge. It was such fun to introduce readers to the Appalachian culture as Jonathan is introduced. From mountain lions to get-togethers to corn shuckins, the traditions, beauties, trials, and changes of the mountain people set the stage for discovery…and, of course, there are the magnificent views.

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There’s something about these mountains, something indescribable, that calls to the hearts of those who’ve lived among them for a while. I’m not sure how to describe it except to say it’s a sense of belonging that settles around the heart like an internal hug, nudging you to slow your pace, take a deep breath, and take in the scenery.

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Welcome to Chapel Hollow

 

The pace of life is different. The people talk a little differently. And there’s an unspoken understanding of community, hard work, and…always…the music.

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I grew up listening to my family play bluegrass gospel together. Some of the menfolk would play on their instruments – fiddle, guitar, bass – and then women and men alike, would bring on the words. Intricate harmonies of family voices. Songs of various texture and depth, but all with the sound of the mountains.

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That’s what I hope to draw readers into through my stories, and this one in particular. My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge steps back into a time where the mountain people were only beginning to feel a greater impact from the outside world. Where their traditions were being questioned and their way-of-life threatened. I also hope to challenge the stereotype some people still have of Appalachian people. Were some of them lazy? Sure. Were some closeminded or thick-headed? You bet. Were they’re alcoholics, abusers, filth, uneducated, poverty-stricken people? Yes. But there was also marvelous imagination, dreamers, artists of all kinds, musicians, crafters, inventors…and, of course, storytellers.

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Come take a journey with me and Jonathan Taylor into Laurel McAdams world in My Heart Belongs in the Blue Ridge.

And bring me your questions.

Is there anything you’d like to learn about the Appalachian culture? Any questions about the story or the people/traditions you read about in the novel?

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Journey into the Blue Ridge Mountains of 1918 where Laurel McAdams endures the challenges of a hard life while dreaming things can eventually improve. But trouble arrives in the form of an outsider. Having failed his British father again, Jonathan Taylor joins is uncle’s missionary endeavors as a teacher in a two-room schoolhouse. Laurel feels compelled to protect the tenderhearted teacher from the harsh realities of Appalachian life, even while his stories of life outside the mountains pull at Laurel’s imagination. Faced with angry parents over teaching methods, Laurel’s father’s drunken rages, and bad news from England, will Jonathan leave and never return, or will he stay and let love bloom?

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Christian Book | Goodreads

About the Authorpepper basham

As a native of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Pepper Basham enjoys sprinkling her Appalachian into her fiction writing. She is an award-winning author of contemporary and historical romance, mom of five, speech-language pathologist, and a lover of Jesus and chocolate. She resides in Asheville, North Carolina with her family.

Blog | Facebook | Goodreads | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter | Website

 

TWEETABLE:

“There’s something about these mountains, something indescribable, that calls to the hearts of those who’ve lived among them for a while.” – Guest Post by @PepperBasham

 

First Line Friday – 1.25.19

first-line-friday-3

Hey Everyone! It’s First Line Friday. So grab a book near you and share the first line in the comments below!

Today I’m sharing the first lines from The Mistress of Tall Acre by Laura Frantz, a book I’ve recently added to my Kindle and can’t wait to read.

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Here is the first line:

On this day, 8 August, 1778, a child was safely delivered . . .

Nay, not safely. Anything but safely.

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The American Revolution is finally over, and Sophie Menzies is starved for good news. When her nearest neighbor, General Seamus Ogilvy, finally comes home to Tall Acre, she hopes it is a sign of better days to come. But the general is now a widower with a small daughter in desperate need of a mother. Nearly destitute, Sophie agrees to marry Seamus and become the mistress of Tall Acre in what seems a safe, sensible arrangement. But when a woman from the general’s past returns without warning, the ties that bind this fledgling family together will be strained to the utmost. When all is said and done, who will be the rightful mistress of Tall Acre?

AMAZON

Click HERE to follow my blog and make sure you don’t miss out on any of my upcoming reviews and other fun posts!

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Now it’s your turn to grab the book nearest you and leave a comment with the first (or your favorite) line!

Then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating:

Why I Want To Hi-Five Clara Barton

 

Clara Barton

I am in the midst of another round of research, this time looking into certain aspects of the Civil War, when I stumble across a letter written by Clara Barton that makes me wish I could go back in time and hi-five her.

I am sure many of you recognize the name of Clara Barton. Additionally, I would say most of you associate her name with nursing. What you may not know is that she also founded and ran an office which searched for the missing soldiers of the Civil War. Today the building where the office was located is a museum and the museum has made several valuable pieces of history available online for public viewing. Included in these are several primary sources, such as letters written by family members requesting Ms. Barton’s help in locating their loved ones.

This may sound quite sad to read, and I would imagine most are, however, one particular set of correspondence left me with a huge grin on my face and (as I mentioned before) wanting to give Clara Barton a very 21st-century hi-five.

The letters to which I am referring include:

  • a letter from a Eugenica Hitchins, who is searching for her brother (April 17, 1865),
  • a letter from the “missing” brother (Oct. 16, 1865), and
  • Clara’s retort (Oct. 23, 1865).

Yes, retort. It seems this particular brother wasn’t overly bothered with letting his family know that he was still alive and felt quite mortified by having his name “blazoned all over the county.” He callously demands to know “what he has done” to deserve this. He goes so far as to say that those concerned for his welfare should simply “wait until I see fit to write them.” I kid you not. Oh, and did I mention, his mother had also been looking for him until she died and his sister made a deathbed promise to their mother that she would find him?

The beauty, the glorious, fantastic part of this story, however, comes in Clara’s retort. You absolutely have to read it in full to truly appreciate it, but here’s a highlight for you:

“‘What you have done’ to render this necessary I certainly do not know. It seems to have been the misfortune of your family to think more of you than you do of them and probably more than you deserve from the manner in which you treat them.”

Oh, and it goes on from there. You can practically feel the heat of her righteous fury simmering on the page (or screen as it may be).

I am telling you, this is a lady I want to be friends with!


Originally published: February 4, 2016

 

Let’s chat!  Did you know about Clara Barton’s post-war efforts? If you had to guess, what would you say was this man’s reason for not contacting his family? What do you suppose happened after he received Clara’s letter? Share your thoughts in the comments below!

First Line Friday – 01.18.19

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Hey Everyone! It’s First Line Friday. So grab a book near you and share the first line in the comments below!

Today I’m sharing the first lines from Loving the Texas Stranger by Mary Connealy, a book I’ve recently added to my Kindle and can’t wait to read.

loving the texas stranger

Here is the first line:

Case Garrison tried to suppress his edginess as he strode down the busy Washington D.C. sidewalk.

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An assassin takes a shot and hits two people with one bullet.
Natalie Brewster, a deep undercover agent for a group that doesn’t officially exist, saw the gunman aiming. He definitely waited, lined up the shot, and tried to kill both of them. Nat and Case Garrison hit the ground bleeding. They both come up shooting and kill the assassin—but that just makes him mad.
Now Case and Nat, who have never before met, have to figure out what they have in common to make them prey for a killer.
And they have to do it while running for their lives because, despite the two of them being highly skilled at keeping a low profile, the killer keeps finding them. They are running at break-neck speed, hiding with all the skill of long-time undercover agents, and falling in love with a passion that might be part of what brought a killer down on them.

AMAZON

Click HERE to follow my blog and make sure you don’t miss out on any of my upcoming reviews and other fun posts!

Are you a Kathleen’s Readers’ Club member? It’s free (of course) and KRC members receive exclusive content, are eligible for exclusive seasonal book giveaways, and more! Join Today!

Now it’s your turn to grab the book nearest you and leave a comment with the first (or your favorite) line!

Then head over to Hoarding Books to see who else is participating: