First Line Friday – 4.28.17

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It’s Friday, which means I’m sharing with you the first line from a book near me and I’m hoping you’ll share the first line of the book nearest you!

Today’s book has been sitting impatiently on my TBR (to-be-read) list for months and I’m expecting to get to it in the next few weeks! It’s Under A Blackberry Moon by Serena B. Miller, author of one of the few books I have read more than once, The Measure of Katie Calloway.

Under the Blackberry Moon

Don’t you just love that cover? Here’s the first line:

Bay City, Michigan
May 15, 1868

“Whose squaw are you, girl?”

I am so excited to be reading this soon!

Now it’s your turn! Grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line!

Then head on over and share your first line with these friends:

Andi @ Radiant Light

Carrie @ Reading Is My Super Power

Rachel @ Bookworm Mama

Sydney @ Singing Librarian Books

Robin @ Robin’s Nest

Katie @ Fiction Aficionado

Bree @ Bibliophile Reviews

Beth @ Faithfully Bookish

Amanda @ With A Joyful Noise

Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective

Heather @ Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Sarah @ All the Book Blog Names are Taken

Lauraine @ Lauraine’s Notes

My Review & GIVEAWAY! – The Patriot & the Loyalist

My Review The Patriot & the Loyalist
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The Patriot & the Loyalist is the second book in the Hearts at War series by Angela K. Couch. (My review of the first book, The Scarlet Coat, may be read HERE.)

Completing his three years in the Continental Army, Daniel Reid still has no desire to return home—not after losing the woman he loves to a British Captain—so he volunteers to ride south through enemy lines and deliver a message to Colonel Francis Marion, the Swamp Fox. With his temper needing a release and a dark haired beauty finding her way into his broken heart, Daniel decides to join the Swamp Fox’s efforts against the British. Little does he know the British still have the upper hand.

Lydia Reynolds has learned that love comes at a price, and she refuses to pay. Better to close her heart to everything and everyone. When her brother-in-law won’t grant her passage to England, where she hopes to hide from her pain, New Englander, Daniel Reid, becomes her only hope—if she can induce him to give her information about the notorious Swamp Fox and his troops. When the British grow impatient and Daniel evades her questions, Lydia must decide how far to take her charade. The poor man, already gutted by love, hasn’t grown as wise as she. Or so she supposes…

Until the truth is known, the muskets are loaded…and it is time to decide where true loyalties lie.

Why This Book:

The hero of this book, Daniel Reid, was a secondary character in The Scarlet Coat and left quite an impression on me. Thus I was very interested to see where the author would take his story.

Opening Line(s):

South Carolina, November 1780

Daniel Reid slowed his horse and sucked air into his lungs as he reined to the road’s grassy edge. Blood pulsated behind his ears but in no way drowned out the pounding hooves of the approaching soldiers, the green of their coats almost deceptive. 

First Impressions:

This book wastes no time throwing its readers straight into the action. From the first page, the hero’s life is in danger and that tension never lets go. Our heroine enters on page 6 and it is clear from the first that we have two very strong-willed, intelligent, passionate characters whose goals are at odds in a very real and dangerous way. Shortly thereafter, we realize that our heroine, too, is playing at a very perilous game – one that could cost her her life.

The Patriot & The Loyalist - Quote Image 1

Characters:

If you’ve read, The Scarlet Coat, you know that Daniel Reid has trouble controlling his temper. To say the least. While the consequences of his actions in the previous book continue to haunt him in The Patriot and the Loyalist, and his temper is far from gone, Daniel is certainly a changed man. Like many of us, he is aware of his character flaws but still struggles to overcome them. He is also plagued with self-doubt in the area of women which only serves to complicate matters in his relationship with Lydia.

Lydia Reynolds is nearly the last survivor of her family which has seen more than its share of tragic loss over the years. This loss has left her fearful of emotional attachment and desperate to flee the memories which haunt her home in Georgetown. Though a highly astute and intelligent woman, her desperation has set her on a one-way track and pushes her to make decisions without always fully considering the consequences.

Gabe Marion & Colonel Francis Marion – Gabe is Francis’ nephew. Both are actual figures from history, and members of the rebel army. It is interesting to see them brought to life through the author’s skillful writing.

As always, there are a few more characters I could mention here, but I don’t wish to reveal their unexpected importance to the story.

Emotional Engagement & Pacing of the Story:

Confession:  I lost several hours of sleep to this book!

If you’ve ever read a book where the suspense is so great you cannot put it down, yet the writing is so well-done – every word so important to the story – that you don’t even consider skipping a single word to hurry ahead, then you’ll understand the powerful read that is this book. There is no urge to skip ahead because there is never a moment where something important isn’t happening.

The Patriot & The Loyalist - Quote Image 2

Elements I especially liked/disliked:

It is extremely evident that this author has done her research! Every detail was so rich and realistic, I felt I now knew what it might have been like living in Georgetown during the revolutionary war. Every movement of either army which was relevant to the story was relayed in such a way as to feel organic and easily understandable. Never once did I sense a notorious “info dump” or get the slightest impression of a history lesson. Yet, I still feel as though I learned something about the war which birthed our country.

I also very much enjoyed the true historical characters involved in the story and seeing their lives play out as a thread woven into the lives of the fictional characters. Again, it felt natural to have this bit of actual history included. They were written so well, that had I not known they were true historical figures, I would not have been able to separate them from the fictional characters.

BONUS: Although the Lydia in this novel is entirely fictional, did you know there was a real revolutionary war spy named Lydia?

Themes:

The Patriot and the Loyalist grapples with issues of truth, deceit, trust and, of course, loyalty. In a setting where right and wrong can seem blurry, these characters are not cookie-cutter people. They face authentic, difficult choices and don’t always make the best decisions. In fact, they often make poor ones, which naturally lends itself to the topic of forgiveness and the struggles involved with moving on after being hurt or hurting others.

Ending:

When the book was over I was disappointed not because the ending wasn’t satisfying (it was!) but because I didn’t want to leave Daniel and Lydia’s world. All the important threads were tied up, and those which shouldn’t realistically be tied were left undone (i.e. the war continued). I felt joy and satisfaction in this ending and couldn’t wait to tell others about the book. There isn’t much more you can ask from a novel.

Additional Thoughts:

As I mentioned, I was reluctant to leave Daniel and Lydia’s world. So, I am so excited to note that this is not the end of the Hearts at War series! Angela K. Couch has another book in the series, The Tory’s Daughter, coming out soon!

Overall Rating:

5 out of 5 stars

Be sure to check back on Monday, May 1st to catch my upcoming interview with Angela K. Couch! 

Have you read any of Angela K. Couch’s books? Which part of this novel most appeals to you?

(none of the links in this review are affiliate links)

TWEETABLES:

Confession:  I lost several hours of sleep to this book! ~ @KathleenDenly #bookreview 

“And I would hardly mistake you for a gentleman.”  #bookreview @KathleenDenly

Richly written & thoroughly researched, this historical romance has it all! ~ @KathleenDenly #bookreview 

Spies! Battles! Love! A can’t miss read! #bookreview ~ @KathleenDenly

Psst! Feel free to borrow any of the photos in this post for sharing on social media and remember to tag me @KathleenDenly !

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As a special thank you to our readers, Angela and I have decided to offer a giveaway!

The winner will receive BOTH of the Hearts at War books!:

  • 1 digital copy of The Scarlet Coat by Angela K. Couch
  • 1 digital copy of The Patriot & The Loyalist by Angela K. Couch

Already own The Scarlet Coat? Not to worry! The winner’s copy of The Scarlet Coat will be emailed in gift card form, so that if you already own it, you can exchange it (btw Angela has another book out) or regift it to a friend who hasn’t read it yet.

HOW TO ENTER:

  1. Sign up to become a member of Kathleen’s Readers’ Club HERE. (Which automatically makes you eligible for my exclusive KRC giveaways!)
  2. Sign up to receive Angela’s newsletter for information on new releases HERE.
  3. Comment on this post with the answer to this question:  Which part of The Patriot & The Loyalist most appeals to you?

Make sure to use an email address you check frequently. If you win, I will use the email address you provided when signing up for my KRC to contact you and send you your prizes.

All 3 of the above steps must be completed to count as your ONE original entry.

BONUS ENTRIES:  If you share this giveaway on any social media, reply to your original comment with the link to your post/tweet and it will count as an extra entry – but ONLY if you have already completed the first 3 steps. Each share will count as an extra entry. IMPORTANT: We don’t want to spam your friends, so you may only share to each social media site once per day!

The Rules:

You MUST complete ALL 3 STEPS to enter. Multiple entries are allowed, providing they fulfill the above entry requirements. All entries must be complete by 11:59pm PST on Tuesday, May 2nd, 2017. Winner will be announced Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017 on http://www.KathleenDenly.com and contacted directly within 24 hours via the email address they used to sign up for Kathleen’s Readers’ Club. Winner must acknowledge the congratulatory email within 48 hours, otherwise an alternate winner will be chosen. I’m excited to say that since this giveaway involves no shipping, it is open to both U.S. AND International entries. Void where prohibited.

How it works:

I will assign a number to each entry (1 number per original comment, plus 1 number for each bonus entry).  I will then enter those numbers into Random.org‘s Random Sequence Generator. Whichever number comes up at the top of the list will be the winner. I will then verify that that person has completed all 3 steps and that the links provided in their bonus entries are valid. If they have not completed all 3 steps or their links are invalid, they will be disqualified and the process will be repeated until a valid winner is found.

Remember: Check back May 3rd to see who won! Or just subscribe to receive my blog updates by email and have the announcement delivered to your inbox! 

IMPORTANT UPDATE!!!!!

Update 4/28/17:  Hi everyone! Please remember that in order to complete Steps 1 & 2 you must CONFIRM YOUR EMAIL by going to your email and clicking on the link in the confirmation email sent to you at sign up. I haven’t checked with Angela yet, but I’m noticing a lot of comments by people who seem to have entered, but whose emails are not in my list of KRC Members. I would hate for you to miss out because of this tiny but important step!!!

First Line Friday – 4.21.17

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What are you reading this week? Open the book nearest you and share the first line with me!

Today I’m featuring a book patiently waiting on my To Be Read list:  A Lasting Impression by Tamera Alexander.

A Lasting Impression cover image

FRENCH QUARTER, NEW ORLEANS,
LOUISIANA
SEPTEMBER 1, 1866
Claire Laurent studied the finished canvas on the easel before her, and though masterpiece hardly described it, she knew the painting was her best yet.

This novel has an interesting preface written by the author explaining how there are bits of actual history woven throughout the mostly fictional novel. I am looking forward to reading it as it creeps closer to the top of my TBR list.

Now it’s your turn! Grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line!

Then head on over and share your first line with these friends:

Carrie @ Reading Is My Super Power

Rachel @ Bookworm Mama

Sydney @ Singing Librarian Books

Andi @ Radiant Light

Heather @ Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Sarah @ All the Book Blog Names are Taken

Robin @ Robin’s Nest

Katie @ Fiction Aficionado

Bree @ Bibliophile Reviews

Beth @ Faithfully Bookish

Amanda @ With A Joyful Noise

Lauraine @ Lauraine’s Notes

Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective

Easter Eggstravaganza!

Easter Eggstravaganza

Since we celebrated the crucifixion and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ this past weekend, I thought today’s post ought to take a slight detour from my usual topics in honor of this important holiday.

Not discounting the magnificent gift of Christ being born in human form, I believe the Easter holiday to be the most important. For all of our faith rests on that which we celebrated this weekend. If Jesus did not truly die and rise again to reign at the right hand of our Father in heaven, then our faith is for naught.

1 Cor 15_17

That said, do not worry. It is not my intention to suddenly attempt the impersonation of a pastor. 😉

Instead, I shall focus today on one of the funnest parts of our Easter celebration traditions:  the Easter Egg. Decorating and hunting these eggs, which are said to represent the empty tomb and resurrection, are one of the most anticipated parts of each years’ celebration.

However, this year my family thought we would try something different. So instead of the usual dying and hunting, we made Wobbly Ninja Eggs and experimented with Easter Egg Rockets. You can click the links for the original instructions which inspired our fun, but truthfully, this was a last minute decision and we didn’t have all the required materials so we tweaked things to fit what we had on hand.

In place of the recommended googly eyes and duct tape (which I know we have, but which seem to have found a super secret hiding space somewhere in our home), for the Wobbly Ninja Eggs we used permanent markers, sticky foam squares (left over from scrapbooking), and scotch tape. We also used some left over air dry clay on the inside in place of the recommended modeling clay.

Ninja Eggs Blog Image

Our results may not be as Pinterest worthy as the originals, but my kids had a blast making and playing with them just the same.

For the rocket eggs I grabbed a generic box of seltzer tabs and a cheap bag of plastic eggs from Walmart while I was there picking up some other necessities. Then we used some leftover painter’s tape to cover the holes in the top and bottom before decorating (again with permanent marker).  Also, since our eggs didn’t come with feet, we made little cardboard “launching stands” to hold our eggs vertical.

Rocket Eggs Close-up
The two I doodled on.
Egg Rocket Process
As you can see, we tried both water and vinegar in combination with the seltzer tabs to see which would produce the best results. Conclusion:  both worked equally well.

Although we did achieve success, I admit we had more fizzles than pops because the eggs were so flimsy. So if you are going to try this, I would recommend shelling out another buck or two to get the stiffer/stronger plastic eggs (the cheaper ones didn’t always have a satisfying snap when closed and those without a good *snap* didn’t pop). The stronger ones will just make your life easier.

That said, here are some clips of two of our successes:

More Easter Fun:

If you’d like to make some beautiful decorative eggs that any book-lover would adore, check out these Book Page Eggs.

If you’d like to learn more about the origin of Easter, check out this article.

How did you celebrate Easter this year? Do you have a favorite Easter tradition?

TWEETABLES:

If Christ is not raised, your faith is futile & you are still in your sins. 1Cor15:17 – Click to Tweet!

Fun Easter Egg-tivities for kids! – Click to Tweet! 

First Line Friday – 4.14.17

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It’s Friday! Yay! I love sharing these first lines with you all and reading the lines you share with me. It’s so fun to discover new books and authors together.

Today I’m sharing the first line from a book by an author I have recently come across and sincerely enjoyed. The author is Nerys Leigh and the book is titled A Hope Unseen. It’s the second book in her Escape to the West series, but can easily be read as a stand alone (the references to her first book/characters in the series will simply pass unnoticed).

A Hope Unseen

 

June, 1869
Sara crept down the staircase, carefully keeping her stockinged feet to the edge where she knew none of the steps would creak.

I know I listed mail order brides as one of the things I was tired of reading back in January of 2016, but as I stated then, there is a reason this premise is so popular. It’s fun, it’s adventuresome, and there is just something romantically thrilling in idea of it. More importantly, Nerys Leigh managed to add a unique element to her plot which I hadn’t read before in a mail order bride story. Not saying it hasn’t been done (I haven’t thoroughly researched to figure that out), just that I haven’t seen it done, so it was new to me and I enjoyed it.

Now it’s your turn! Grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line!

Then head on over and share your first line with these friends:

Carrie @ Reading Is My Super Power

Rachel @ Bookworm Mama

Sydney @ Singing Librarian Books

Andi @ Radiant Light

Heather @ Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Sarah @ All the Book Blog Names are Taken

Robin @ Robin’s Nest

Katie @ Fiction Aficionado

Bree @ Bibliophile Reviews

Beth @ Faithfully Bookish

Amanda @ With A Joyful Noise

Lauraine @ Lauraine’s Notes

Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective

Author Interview – Sondra Kraak

Author Interview Blog Title Image - Sondra Kraak

Today we are in for a special treat! Sondra Kraak has kindly agreed to share a little about herself and the behind the scenes of writing her latest release, Such a Hope the first book in her Paths of Grace series.

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Such a Hope

Washington Territory, 1871

Anna Warren grew up on the seat of a wagon, the daughter of Seattle’s busiest freighter. After her father’s death—a tragedy away from home—she returns to their cabin on the outskirts of Seattle, seeking the sense of belonging that eluded her childhood. But will her desire to pray for miraculous healing for the sick and wounded endear or alienate her to the community? Her most aggravating challenger is also her staunchest defender and has brown hair and eyes, stands six feet tall, and farms with unchecked tenacity. Tristan Porter. This farmer her father had befriended holds more secrets than Yesler’s Mill holds logs.

When ugly rumors arise about her spiritual gift and her property, Anna fears her quest to find belonging will be thwarted.

Tristan holds the truth to set her free, but revealing it will require him to face the disappointments of his past and surrender his plans for the future—a sacrifice he’s not sure he can make.

If you haven’t already, you can check out my review of Such a Hope by clicking HERE

A little about Sondra

Sondra KraakA native of Washington State, Sondra Kraak grew up playing in the rain, hammering out Chopin at the piano, and running up and down the basketball court. Now settled in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, she enjoys spending time with her husband and children, blogging about spiritual truths, and writing historical romance set in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. She delights in sharing stories that not only entertain, but nourish the soul. Her debut novel, One Plus One Equals Trouble, was a Genesis semi-finalist (2015) and the winner of the Blue Ridge Mountains Christian Writers Conference Unpublished Women’s Fiction Award (2015).

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Hi Sondra! Thanks so much for joining me today. Since you’ve already discussed much of the spiritual side of your novel in an interview with Toni Shiloh, I thought we’d stick to some fun, getting to know you and behind-the-scenes type of questions today.

I know that when I write I can often get munchy so I keep a bag of pretzel sticks on hand, along with some candy to reward myself at the end of a writing session. I’m curious, what’s your favorite snack to munch on while you write?

Chocolate chips. Peanut M&Ms. Gummy candy. It’s hard to write and eat at the same time unless it’s something I can pop into my mouth, like chocolate. Popcorn is my favorite snack, but I don’t eat it as I write. Sometimes I eat is as a distraction from writing.

Oooh. I love popcorn. My favorite is air-popped white popcorn with tons of salt.

I know some writers use different pen names for a variety of reasons. Did you ever consider writing under a pseudonym?

Nope. It never crossed my mind, but it’s unfortunate I have a last name with a double vowel since most people don’t know how to pronounce double vowels. Kraak is pronounced crock, like crock pot. If I open a restaurant, I’m going to call it The Kraak Pot, and cook everything in crock pots. But if people pronounce my name like they usually do (crack), that name could be misleading, and I could get some interesting customers.

Ha ha ha! Oh I love that! I think I’d show up either way it was pronounced if only out of sheer curiosity. 

My love of writing definitely began with my childhood love of reading. What was your favorite book as a child?

I have many fond memories of my parents reading to me. My dad read Hardy Boys mysteries to me, and my mom read the Ramona Quimby series. But picture books are my favorite, and my children now use some of my old books. (See the picture below.)

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I had a few of those on my childhood bookshelves, too! It’s so special how the love of reading gets passed from one generation to the next. My parents read Wilder’s Little House series to me and my grandmother read the Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books to us whenever we spent the night at her house. I still have both sets. 

I have read some very different ways that various authors come up with the names for their characters. How do you select the names for your characters?

I don’t have a fancy process. I use what names come to mind or what names I like. I love the name Luke (hero in Two Ways Home). Tristan is named after my husband’s favorite movie hero (Tristan from Legends of the Fall). Claire sounds sophisticated to me, which fits my schoolteacher (One Plus One Equals Trouble). Barrett . . . that was random.

In Three Words and a Kiss (this year’s release), my hero Cam experiences an identity crisis. His safe, routine life is turned upside down when the owner of his blacksmith shop, Samantha Klein, comes to town. Samantha’s nickname is Sam. I wanted their names to rhyme so that Cam feels like even something as fundamental as his name is being stripped from him (she doesn’t like how their names sound alike and asks him to change his. What?! He’s not going for that).

Hmm. She doesn’t like their names sounding alike? Seems a little persnickety. I’m trying to picture the kind of woman who asks her employee to change his name for a reason like that. Also, the kind of woman who takes ownership of a blacksmith shop with a male employee in that time period. Sounds like Cam is going to have his hands full! 🙂

BTW – As Luke is my husband’s name, I’m kinda partial to it, too. 😉

Can you tell me something about your story that you think only a few people will know?

Speaking of names, here’s a little secret about Such a Hope. Anna’s name wasn’t Anna to begin with, and in my mind, she’s still not Anna. Her original name was Ruby, but then another indie author released a historical book Healing Ruby about a young girl named Ruby with the gift of healing. Even though the time period, voice, and story is so different from Such a Hope, I wanted to respect that author by not also releasing a historical romance about a girl named Ruby with the gift of healing. That might get confusing to readers. So Ruby became Anna.

Wow. That must have been difficult to adjust to. I’ve heard stories of publishers telling authors to change their character’s names and it always makes me shudder. These characters become so real to us as writers, it’s almost like someone asking me to change the name of one of my children. That said, I can definitely see why you made that tough decision and I applaud you for it. 

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In a previous interview with Toni Shiloh you mentioned that you “edited out a bunch [of history] that ended up unnecessary to the story.” Can you share some of what you edited out?

A lot of that editing meant shortening scenes, for instance in the beginning when Tristan is talking with President Hall (who was a real person) from the Territorial University. I needed enough about the Morrill Act and farming inventions to show Tristan knew his stuff and was passionate, but not too much, else readers get bored. Same thing in other scenes where Tristan talks to farmers.

Also, I had to not get distracted by all the real people and places in my story. I didn’t want to inundate readers with extra information. One example is Conklin House, which is briefly mentioned several times. It was a beautiful building shipped from Georgia and had an internationally known proprietress who was rumored to cuss in seven languages. She even chased off some government surveyors once by throwing sticks and stones at them. Though it was a hotel and served as the courtroom and town hall for a while, it was also a brothel. The history is so interesting. The house will show up much more in my second book in the Paths of Grace series, but in Such a Hope, readers didn’t need to know all that history. I had to delete some descriptions and commentating.

In case readers are curious, these people and places that show up (or are mentioned) are real: Arthur Denny, Doc and Catherine Maynard, Dr. Smith, Carson Boren, Rev. Bagley, Thomas Mercer, Dexter Horton, Henry and Sarah Yesler, Captain McRedmond, Skid Row, Yesler Hall, Matthias and the Railroad House, Brown Church and White Church (yes, they were distinguished and called by their exterior paint colors). And all the towns, cities, and universities referred to. However, all words and actions in the story are entirely of my own imagining.

Wow. You have clearly done your research and I certainly appreciate the restraint you showed in deciding what to include and what to leave out. I think you did a great job giving me just enough information to understand what I needed to without ever feeling like I was being educated instead of entertained. Also, that is a long list of real people to include in one story, yet while reading the novel I had no idea so many of the characters were real. They blended in seamlessly with your fictional characters. Good job!

What’s your favorite part of being a writer?

Well, other than the relationships I’ve made with other authors (more on that in the next question), my favorite part of being a writer is creating stories. I like to think about characters and their wounds and desires and how Jesus will heal those wounds. And I love making two people fall in love because that’s such a beautiful process of coming to see another person in a deep and honest way (and being known in a deep, honest way). I often take notes during sermons through the eyes of a character, like “oh, that’s just what Lorna’s struggling with. This can be a break through moment for her!” Which is a bit funny to sit in a pew and apply the Word of God to imaginary people, but really, applying truth to my stories is a way to process that truth and apply it to my own life. That’s what fiction is about for me.

That’s awesome. Now I want to sit behind you in church and peek over your shoulder at your notes! 😉

Sondra Kraak Interview Promo Image

What other authors are you friends with and how did they help you become a better writer?

Jennifer Rodewald is probably the most influential author for me because she helped me choose the indie path (independent publishing). Watching her indie publish was the main reason I became interested in it. She’s also my critique partner, and her input into my stories and writings is invaluable. I’m also in a critique group with several other aspiring authors, and their friendship and encouragement is beyond compare. The people I’ve met through conferences, ACFW loops, and social media have enriched my life so much. The act of writing is done solo—others can’t write your story—but being a writer is not a solitary endeavor.

I love what you said at the end, there. That is so true. It’s like the saying about iron sharpening iron. In a healthy writing community, we all work together to make each other better and stronger. 

I’m always looking for new authors to read and one of the reasons I do so many book reviews and interviews is because I love sharing the news when I find a great one. Can you share another new or new-to-you author whose book you read this year and are excited about?

I’m reading Crystal Walton’s Write Me Home, and I love her voice. It’s sharp and witty, and she writes in deep point of view. You feel like you’re right there in the character’s mind. I’m also looking forward to reading Tammy Gray soon. I have some of her books on my kindle but haven’t gotten to them yet. My reading time is limited, so mostly I stick to authors whose voices I love and identify with and can learn from: Ronie Kendig, Susan May Warren, Denise Hunter, Karen Witemeyer, Tamera Alexander. After growing up on historical, I find myself reading way more contemporary now days. Interesting, huh?

I haven’t read anything by either Crystal or Tammy. Now I’ve added them to my list! 🙂 I do think it’s interesting that you are reading more contemporary lately. I find I naturally go through phases where I read just historical romance or just contemporary or even just dystopian or fantasy/sci-fi for a while and then I switch. 

Okay, that’s all the questions I have for today. Thank you so much for sharing with us, Sondra! It’s been fun getting to know you a little better.

Thank you graphic

Well readers, Did you enjoy the interview? Do you have any additional questions for Sondra? What was your favorite book as a child? Let me know in the comments below!

 

TWEETABLES

“The act of writing is done solo…but being a writer is not a solitary endeavor.” @SondraKraak #AuthorInterview – Click to Tweet!

The secret habit Sondra Kraak practices in church.  #AuthorInterview @SondraKraak ~ @KathleenDenly – Click to Tweet!

Why you might think twice before entering Sondra Kraak’s imaginary restaurant. #AuthorInterview ~ @KathleenDenly – Click to Tweet!

First Line Friday – 4.7.17

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I recently shared with you my (raving) review of The Scarlet Coat by Angela K. Couch and how eager I was for the next book in the Hearts at War series to come out. Well, guess what? Today is RELEASE DAY for The Patriot and the Loyalist!!! To celebrate, I’m sharing the first line:

the patriot and the loyalist cover image

 

Daniel Reid slowed his horse and sucked air into his lungs as he reined to the road’s grassy edge.

I seriously cannot wait to read this book! Daniel was such a strong character in the first book, I’m sure he’ll make an excellent hero and I’m excited to meet the heroine who steals his heart.

Now it’s your turn! Grab the book nearest to you and leave a comment with the first line!

Then head on over and share your first line with these friends:

Carrie @ Reading Is My Super Power

Rachel @ Bookworm Mama

Sydney @ Singing Librarian Books

Andi @ Radiant Light

Heather @ Encouraging Words from the Tea Queen

Sarah @ All the Book Blog Names are Taken

Robin @ Robin’s Nest

Katie @ Fiction Aficionado

Bree @ Bibliophile Reviews

Beth @ Faithfully Bookish

Amanda @ With A Joyful Noise

Lauraine @ Lauraine’s Notes

Jessica @ A Baker’s Perspective