First Line Friday – 4.12.19

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Don’t you just love Fridays? I don’t know about you, but I can often squeeze in a little more reading on the weekends than I can during the week. I doubt I’ll be doing much reading this weekend, though. I’m headed for the 2019 Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference! KRC Members can look for my spring newsletter with all my exciting updates (and, of course, the latest giveaways and book deals) to land in their inbox shortly after I return. If you aren’t yet a KRC Member, be sure to click the link below to sign up!

Today I’m featuring, A Claim of Her Own by Stephanie Grace Whitson. This is one of those books you remember vividly even years later.

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Here’s the first line:

Walking down the main street in Deadwood is like stepping onto hell’s front porch.

Doesn’t that line make you excited to keep reading?

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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 We Buy the Books We Do

Why We Buy The Books We Do

There are millions (billions?) of books out there waiting for us to buy and read them. So why do we buy the books that we do? What makes us choose a particular book and bring it home with us or load it onto our ereader?

Well, let’s start with the two most obvious reasons:

  1. There are those books whose authors who we know and love. Whatever they write, we’re going to buy. It’s just that simple.
  2. Then there are the sequels to that first book in a series. Maybe we knew what we were getting into or maybe we didn’t realize that great premise was just the start of a longer story. Either way, we’re hooked now and must buy the next book to see where this story goes.

Beyond this, however, things get a bit more complicated. We all have a limited book budget (of both time & money) and with so much of our budget already allocated to the two categories above, what helps a book gain a portion of our remaining budget? I have my suspicions, but I thought I’d do a little anecdotal research and take a look back at five of my most recent impulse purchases to consider what persuaded me to make them. To keep things simple, I’m restricting this to my fiction choices (since the reasons for purchasing nonfiction are so different) and only those books which I have not read before (so an audio version of a book I’ve read previously doesn’t count).

Justice

Justice by Emily Conrad – I read the first line and premise on Iola Goulton’s blog as part of our First Line Friday fun. The premise reminded me of the biblical story of Mary and Joseph (minus the immaculate conception, of course). It intrigued me and was on sale, so I immediately purchased it.

The Determined GroomThe Determined Groom by Cami Checketts – This novel was recommended to me in a newsletter written by an author I enjoy and who writes in the same genre (Lucy McConnell). I don’t currently have many unread titles like this on my kindle, plus it was on sale for $0.99. So I clicked through to buy it.

The Hope of Azure Springs

The Hope of Azure Springs by Rachel Fordham – I was searching the internet for authors in my genre who’d worked with a particular publisher when I came across a blog post Rachel had written about the design of her cover. As soon as I read the premise, I knew I wanted to read her novel. (I’m a sucker for orphans and nineteenth-century America.)

Be Still My Heart

Be Still, My Heart – This is a novella collection I purchased in a few months ago. To be honest, I don’t completely remember how I found this book, but I *think* I saw a link on Twitter. What I do remember is that it was a set of 7 Christian romance novellas being offered for FREE with all new-to-me authors. A no-brainer, really. I love discovering new authors and a novella doesn’t take up too much of my reading time budget.

The Story Peddler

The Story Peddler by Lindsay A. Franklin – Okay, yes, if you watched my Facebook Live video from the Mount Hermon Christian Writers Conference this year, you know that I have met Linsday. However, I had added her book to my TBR long before that because I’d seen its gorgeous cover all over the book blogosphere and was further drawn in by its premise. The idea of stories as tangible things was fascinating to me. Throw in a romance and I was sold.

So there you have them, five different books and five different reasons behind my purchases.

What about you? Which books have you purchased lately that weren’t part of a series you’d already started or by an author you already know and love? What motivated you to purchase them? Have you read them? How did it work out? 

Let’s chat books in the comments below!

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5 Books, 5 Reasons – Why we buy the books we do. 

 

 

 

10 Awesome Books on Audible

10 Awesome Books on Audible

One of the great things about reviewing books is getting to read fantastic works earlier than most readers. One of the downsides is that by the time the audiobook releases for some of my favorites, I’m often too busy reading the next new release to get a chance to enjoy the audio versions.

That said, I do love a good audiobook, so I thought I’d share with you 10 awesome books currently available on Audible.

Since I have read and reviewed each one of these, I’m providing links to my reviews to help you with deciding which you’re in the mood for.

Book #1:

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Long Time Gone by Mary Connealy

My Review5 Stars!

Book #2:

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Heart on the Line by Karen Witemeyer

My Review: 4 Stars!

Book #3:

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The Thorn Bearer by Pepper D. Basham

My Review5 Stars!

Book #4:

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The Thorn Keeper by Pepper D. Basham

My Review: 4.5 Stars!

Book #5:

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A Name Unknown by Roseanna M. White

My Review5 Stars!

Book #6:

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Love Held Captive by Shelley Shepard Gray

My Review5 Stars!

Book #7:

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The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof

My Review5 Stars!

Book #8:

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Against the Tide by Elizabeth Camden

My Review5 Stars!

Book #9:

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Never Forget by Jody Hedlund

My Review5 Stars!

Book #10:

This one is newly released on Audible and I have enjoyed experiencing this story in a whole new way. I also recently reviewed this book on Goodreads and although I have mentioned it her previously (in a First Line Friday post and an interview with the author last summer), I never officially shared my review here. So below you will find the full text of my mini-review.

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The Girl Who Could See by Kara Swanson

My Review5 Stars!

I picked up this fantastic novella at a writers conference in June of 2017. I started reading it that night thinking I would just read a page or two and go to sleep. WRONG! I couldn’t stop reading! This book had my attention from the start and didn’t let go until the last page. Almost a year later, I still think about it and with the recent release of its audible version, I am actually revisiting this story – an extreme rarity for me. Even if you don’t normally read this genre, I highly recommend giving it a try. I read a lot, but I have never read anything quite as unique and entertaining as this. There is a Christian message in there, but it is subtle (without being weak) and completely organic.

 

Let’s Chat!

Have you listened to any of these books? What did you think of the narration? Do you prefer printed, digital, or audiobooks?

 

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Check out these 10 Awesome Books on Audible! #BookReviews #Audiobooks #ChristFic @KathleenDenly

My Fiction Fantasy Vacation

Earlier this year, Carrie shared her Bookish Places Bucket List over at Reading Is My Superpower, and it got me to thinking of all the book-related places I’ve dreamed of visiting. So I asked myself,  “If money grew on trees and I could spend one year visiting any and as many of those places as I like, where would I go?” The result was my fiction fantasy vacation:

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First stop would have to be Prince Edward Island since I’ve been dreaming of visiting L.M. Montgomery’s Green Gables since I was a little girl.

Fun Fact - First born daughter

Jane Austen’s Pride & Prejudice raved so beautifully of the countryside in Derbyshire it would seem almost sinful not to include it in my fiction fantasy vacation. From Chatsworth to Stanage Edge, there is much to see and do in this beautiful part of England

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Photo from PeriodDramas.com

It may be cliche, but some of my favorite historical romances have taken place along the Oregon Trail. Therefore, I would love the opportunity to retrace or reenact the experience of those brave pioneers (not forgetting the tragedies that went along with this westward expansion). In a perfect world, I could travel back in time and actually join a wagon train for the entire length of the journey – bringing with me my modern medicines and a magical helicopter that could instantly transport me to a very modern hospital in the case of emergency, of course. Barring that, I’d love to do something like the tour outlined here and then take part in a reenactment such as this one.

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After my last pick, it will hardly come as a surprise that I also enjoy a well-written cowboy romance. So of course, my fantasy vacation needs to include the closest thing this city girl can get to actual ranching experience:  a dude ranch! Only I’m just crazy enough not to want to simply hang out at a ranch and maybe ride a horse or two. I actually want to muck stalls, drive cattle, groom horses and maybe even learn to lasso. That’s easy, right? Well, whatever the case, I figure one of the top 50 working ranch vacation places listed HERE ought to suit my fancy. 🙂

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Those horns are soft, right?

I’ll probably be all tuckered out after my stay at the ranch. What better way to recharge than a nice long train ride? Yep. I like a good train romance, too. Although I don’t think it is possible to get the full ash-in-your-face, week-long-travel-on-a-hard-wooden-bench experience, these days, I would like to experience traveling from New York to San Francisco by rail. And perhaps while I’m riding, I’ll travel back in time by reading the “first-person” contemporary accounts available HERE.

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Then, to round off my vacation, I’ll test my seafaring skills by learning to crew a gold-rush era replica schooner off the coast of my hometown, San Diego.

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What do you think? Would you enjoy coming along on my fantasy fiction vacation? What would your fantasy fiction vacation include?

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First Line Friday – 2.24.17

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Don’t you just love Fridays? I don’t know about you, but I can often squeeze in a little more reading on the weekends than I can during the week. Then, of course, there’s church to look forward to and hopefully some extra sleep. These days, though, my favorite part of Fridays is visiting all the First Line Friday posts and checking out the books my friends are talking about on their blogs.

Today I’m featuring a book I read a while ago that has stood out in my memory, which is saying a lot considering the number of books I read. The book is titled, A Claim of Her Own and was written by Stephanie Grace Whitson.

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Here’s the first line:

Walking down the main street in Deadwood is like stepping onto hell’s front porch.

Doesn’t that line make you excited to keep reading?

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 my 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

Please be sure to stop by and welcome the newest member to First Line Fridays:  Amanda @ With A Joyful Noise

First Line Friday – 02.17.17

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Hey, everybody! It’s Friday! You know what that means. We get to read and share the first lines of some pretty great books.

Today I am featuring Pepper D. Basham’s book, The Thorn Bearer (which I have reviewed previously), because it is the first book in the Penned in Time series and I will be reviewing the third book in the series, The Thorn Healer, on Monday. Be sure to sign up to follow my blog, so you don’t miss it!Cover Image of "The Thorn Bearer" by Pepper D Basham

The Thorn Bearer also has some of my favorite opening lines. Which is why I cannot decide whether I like the first line of the prologue or the first line of the first chapter better. So I’ve decided to share both:

Prologue:

“Death hovered in the shadows of the room, a shapeless presence as familiar to Ashleigh Dougall as the scent of morphine.”

Chapter 1:

“There is a distinct difference between marrying a man you do not love, and falling in love with a man you cannot marry.”

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