Posted in Wedding Wednesday

Wedding Wednesday: A Book Lover’s Dream

Wedding Wednesday (1)

Oh you guys. You’re probably all going to wonder what took me so long to get to this Wedding Wednesday.

I don’t know. I haven’t had enough coffee, apparently. I need more.

Lots more.

But today. Today is the day. Today…I present, a Book Lover’s Wedding.

Yes. ALL THE YESES!

The dress:

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From Belle the Magazine

Isn’t this dress sweet? I love the classic lines and deep sweetheart neckline, but you know what I adore?? How the color reminds me of vintage book paper, and the layers remind me of falling book pages. I love this. For reals.

And bonus jewelry:

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From BuzzFeed

Because who doesn’t want Pride & Prejudice earrings?! (I may actually go find these and buy them just because. Don’t tell the husband though, k?)

The bouquet:

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From Huffington Post

Because YES. Even though these are pages from a book, which kinda hurts my heart. BUT I HAVE A SOLUTION! You can download images of book pages, print them out on both sides of a piece of paper, and then create this bouquet with those printed pages! See? IT’S A GOOD PLAN.

For the Groom:

Yeah, for once I’m including him in this. Nice, eh?

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From Etsy

 

*snicker*

The invitation:

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From BuzzFeed

How cute is this?! With the most important dates listed on the library card, then the wedding date? As an invitation?? I’m in love.

The decor:

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From BuzzFeed

Because who doesn’t want to be married under a book arch?! I die.

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From Mod Wedding

For the guest book table? How cute!

The cake:

I admit it, I couldn’t decide. One is less literal and two are, well, more literal. And I love them all.

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From Mod Wedding

I love how clean this one is, except for the “ink print” on a couple of the layers. Very simple and elegant!

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From Weddingbells.ca via Indulgy

This one is sweet and simple, and could be personalized to the bride and groom specifically. Love.

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From Bustle

So this one is definitely more colorful, but I adore the idea of having book titles on the cake that both the bride and groom love. I mean, this. is. fab.

The favors:

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From Instagram

Okay, so this is actually an idea from a bookstore. But really, this could easily be done as wedding favors for guests! Do this and let the guests each choose one. You can go to a used bookstore to find these books, so you’d not only be saving a bit of money, but supporting a local business. What could be better?

***

Well? What did you think? Would you be all over a book wedding?

Confession: I kinda want to renew my wedding vows just so I can have this wedding. Whoops.

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Posted in Blog

Get Your Tickets!

It's been a week!

It’s been a week! A good week, but definitely a busy one! So busy, I actually forgot Wedding Wednesday!! How terrible of me! I hang my head in shame.

So while I don’t have a Wedding Wednesday for you this week, I do want to draw attention to an event that will be happening in August! You may have seen some talk on Facebook about a Christian fiction readers retreat…or you may not have. If you live in a hole. 😉

A few extremely dedicated women, including my dear Wonder Twin, Carrie, have organized this event. There are more than thirty authors taking part!!! Go HERE to read more about it.

While the early bird pricing is over, registration is still open! Make sure you check it out and if you’re within driving distance (or want a quick getaway, hop a plane) of Nashville, make sure you attend this event! It’ll be spectacular!!!

One more for the road: Check out the Christian Fiction Readers Retreat!

Christian Fiction Readers Retreat

Posted in For Fun

Forever Friday…On Sunday…and Not Forever

Sooooo…yeah. I missed Forever Friday last week. But I promise I had a great reason!

This past Thursday, one of my super-sweet critique partners, Teresa Tysinger, flew into my city to attend the Wordsowers Christian Writers Conference. It was the first time we got to meet in person, and it was phenomenal! As Teresa kept saying, “You’re not two-dimensional!” Bahaha!! I love her to pieces.

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I got the opportunity to make her one of my favorite lattes eeeever, a Kit Kat latte.

It was like we’d known each other our whole lives. Pretty fab, if you ask me. The next day, our other two critique partners, Holly Michael and Shawna Robinson Young, drove in (well, Shawna flew to Holly’s city and together they drove to my house). It was the first time the four of us had met, and just as when Teresa and I met, it was like we’d all known one another our whole lives. God is pretty amazing.

Aren’t they beautiful???? I’m totally stealing a line from Teresa: “My critique partners are cuter than yours!”

When Holly and Shawna arrived, the four of us drove downtown and had lunch at Twisted Fork with the sweetest, most beautiful Jennifer Slattery and her incredible husband. And speaking of Jennifer’s husband…I’m sorry, S., for all you had to endure during our conversation. 😉 And thank you for lunch. ❤

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Apparently I need my roots done. Whoops.

After Jennifer and her husband left, the four of us sat there for another hour-and-a-half just talking. (It was suggested Holly pick up a new pen name and write in a different genre, but I’ll let her make that decision.) Then we headed over a block to Aromas for some coffee and went to the first night of the writer’s conference. It was a great intro section. But the party animals the four of us are, we went for dinner–at Arby’s–and shut the place down. Awwww yeeeeaaaaah. You know you’re jealous.

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The next morning, we woke up bright and early–oh-so-early–and went back to the church where the conference was held and spent a great day learning from published authors, like the ever-so-funny Mary Connealy.

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She is so much fun!

And can I totally brag for a moment?? Along with Jennifer, I have two other friends I meet with once a month to brainstorm, and I adore all three ladies!! Sara, Stephanie, Jennifer, and I have a great time together, and they’ve helped me immensely!

Edited

Another fun part of the conference? Meeting another new friend! Chaka Heinze is pretty hilarious. I adore her already, and I’m so happy she lives here so I can get together with her!

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Her smile is SO contagious!

And at the end of the conference, an announcement for next year’s conference was made. You wanna know who the keynote speaker will be??? New York Times bestselling author, Tosca Lee!!!!!!!! (You have no idea how excited I am!) I’ve had the honor of meeting her once and taking a workshop she taught, and she is so incredibly kind and fun, and such a phenomenal author!

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Keep an eye on the Wordsowers site. And attend the monthly meetings if you’re local!

It was such a fantastic weekend, seriously. So fantastic, I ran myself down and am sitting on my couch as I write this with no voice left. Literally.

I should get some ice cream to soothe that.

But first, a couple more selfies with Teresa. 🙂

 

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Posted in Book Review

Book Review: The Thorn Keeper

Oh friends. If you go to my Check It Out page, you’ll see a list of authors I think you should, well, check out. On that page is one Pepper D. Basham. And have I got a fabulous book review for you today. Read it, then go buy and read Pepper’s books. Yes. I’m being bossy.

The Thorn Keeper

First, isn’t that cover devine?

Release date: February 28, 2016

Publisher: Vinspire Publishing (http://www.vinspirepublishing.com/#!the-thorn-keeper/ccst)

Author’s Web Site: http://pepperdbasham.com/

Where to Buy: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Kobo

From the publisher:

With her newfound faith, Catherine Dougall hopes to take the remnants of her threadbare life and make something beautiful, even if society shuns every choice she makes.

Dr. David Ross must save his war hospital from ruin, but when his notorious aunt makes an offer he can’t refuse, he must choose between his surprising affection for a reformed flirt or his dreams.

From the beautiful Derbyshire countryside to the trenches of World War One, Catherine and David must learn to trust in a God who never forgets his children and fashions beauty out of the most broken things.

My thoughts:

I don’t even know where to start. Captivating. Sweeping. Swoon-worthy.

Pepper Basham writes historical with such beautiful, poetic prose, you can’t help but be caught up in her sweeping romances. And when I say it’s a romance, I don’t mean it’s just a romance between a man and a woman. It’s a romance between a man, a woman, and God. Pepper weaves faith so naturally into her stories, and The Thorn Keeper is no exception.

From Catherine’s spiritual journey closer to the end of The Thorn Bearer to her continued journey and growth in this book, you’ll experience her transformation from a pretty not-so-great character to a woman who loves and lives passionately, both for the Lord and for her dreams.

Dr. David Ross is a man who loves quietly—albeit also passionately—and not only supports and encourages Catherine in her dreams, but deeply cares for what happens to her. He is there to help her not just overcome, but flourish. A man who truly loves God, people, and, well…Catherine.

I can’t say enough about Pepper’s writing. It’s solid, endearing, and again, so poetic. I seriously can’t do her justice in this review. The only thing I can do is tell you that I loved this book and you need to read this. Start out with The Thorn Bearer if you haven’t already read it, then continue with this one.

And just for your info, there will be a third book later this year, if I’m not mistaken. (WAHOO!!)

*Note: I was actually not asked to post a review on this blog, but I loved this book so much, I had to. And I didn’t receive it free; I bought it. And yes. You should, too.

Posted in Forever Friday

Forever Friday: Submission (Don’t be afraid!)

FOREVER FRIDAY (1)

67a2ba26408228ee07e597e14c1836d0Submission. Oh, that nasty, hard-to-swallow word. But…

“I do not think it means what you think it means.”
~Inigo Montoya, The Princess Bride

I’ve been thinking on this subject for a while now, as it’s a topic that keeps popping up online and among my friends. But I’m not nearly as eloquent (or, since she would smack me for saying that, I’m not nearly as experienced and/or wise on this subject) as one of my dear friends, author Jennifer Slattery.

So today, I’m doing something a little different for Forever Friday. I’m sending you all over to read Jennifer’s posts on her blog. Please. Go and read. Because seriously, submission isn’t the four-letter word we all think it is.

Read part one here.

Read part two here.

Read part three here.

Jennifer has published four novels, all focusing on marriages. Trust me when I say, she breakingfree_n1664109knows her stuff. Find her books on New Hope Publishers, Barnes & Noble, Christianbook.com, and Amazon. Her latest is Breaking Free, and promises to be her best yet.

Jennifer Slattery writes soul-stirring fiction for New Hope Publishers and devotions for Internet Café Devotions, the group blog, Faith-filled Friends, and her personal blog. She also does content editing for Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas’ Firefly imprint, and loves working with authors who are serious about pursuing their calling. When not writing, reading, or editing, Jennifer loves going on mall dates with her adult daughter and coffee dates with her hilariously fun husband.

Visit with Jennifer online at JenniferSlatteryLivesOutLoud.com and connect with her on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/JenSlatte.

 

 

Posted in Book Review

Review: On the Wings of a Whisper

On the Wings of a Whisper

Release date: March 15, 2016

Publisher: Serene Lake Publishing

Author’s Web Site: http://www.lynnettebonner.com/

Order it: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble

From the publisher:

RyAnne Hunter is determined to stop her father from leaving for the continent of Africa, where he plans to start a mission station. And she only has until morning. Tonight at the Harcourts’ Annual Ball will be her last chance to change his mind. She must succeed! Papa’s health, and her future, depend on her success. But, as if her task isn’t difficult enough, now the insufferable Captain Dawson has agreed to guide Papa’s expedition!

After spending six months at sea, Captain Trent Dawson only wants to think about rest and relaxation. However, when he’s recruited by a British naval officer to help put an end to a slave smuggling ring, the perfect opportunity presents itself in Dr. Hunter, who needs a guide to the Interior. Now if he can just help the doctor without spending too much time with the man’s troublesome and flighty youngest daughter.

A thrilling historical romance from the time of missionary explorer David Livingstone.

My thoughts:

This was such a great start to a serialized series!! Lynnette Bonner has crafted characters that grab you immediately. RyAnne is a determined firecracker of a character, and Trent is the perfect balance for her. Both are lovable. They’ll bring you back again and again for the following installments in this series.

Lynnette has also done a masterful job of description in this story! It truly felt like I was there, and is obvious she has a love for Africa that will be hard for any other author to match. The setting of this story—Zanzibar in 1866—brings in some historical elements that are very hard to read, especially at the very end of the book when RyAnne witnesses something first-hand. Though the scene was reality, the author does a beautiful job of balancing it with hope.

Overall, I highly recommend this book. It’ll be a hard wait for the second installment, though!

*I was given this book for free from the author in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own and not influenced in any way.

Posted in Wedding Wednesday

Wedding Wednesday: Beachside

Wedding Wednesday (1)

(Sorry I’m about 12 hours later than I wanted to be! Life.)

It’s everyone’s favorite day again! Woohoo!

I know you’ve all been waiting with baited breath, and it’s finally here!

Last week, one of the sweet commenters (mki52, I’m looking at you!) mentioned beach weddings, so I thought I’d have fun with it, especially in the midst of winter. While I love winter and the cold, I know pretty much all but one of you are down in the dumps about it. Ha!

So, welcome to our beach wedding. ❤

The dress:

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From ModWedding

 

The shoes:

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From ZKKoo

How fun are these?! With a dress as simple as the one above, a little pearls and bling on the shoes are perfect! So cute for walking down the aisle in the sand.

The venue:

Town and Country Mag
From Town and Country Magazine

The ring:

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From Topazery

love these types of wedding bands. Subtle glitz and glam with intricate and pretty design.

The cake:

 

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From Colin Cowie Weddings

I love the turquoise on this cake! It’s pretty, simple, elegant, yet beach-worthy!

The flowers:

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From Weddingomania

Look at that sweet bouquet!! And love that the ribbon matches the cake. 😉

The fun photo:

Pinterest pin from beau-coupDOTcom
Pinned from Pinterest courtesy of beau-coup.com

Honestly, I think this is the best photo. I love it!!

What do you think? Would you do a beach wedding?

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Posted in Book Review

Book Review: The Bachelor Girl’s Guide to Murder by Rachel McMillan

Ohhhhh, have I got a fun one for you today!! The Bachelor Girl’s Guide to Murder by Rachel McMillan is so….well, read my review!

The Bachelor Girl's Guide to Murder

Release date: March 1, 2016

Publisher: Harvest House Publishers

Author’s Web Site: http://www.rkmcmillan.com/

Order it: Amazon, Kobo, Barnes & Noble, Christianbook.com

From the publisher:

In 1910 Toronto, while other bachelor girls perfect their domestic skills and find husbands, two friends perfect their sleuthing skills and find a murderer.

Inspired by their fascination with all things Sherlock Holmes, best friends and flatmates Merinda and Jem launch a consulting detective business. The deaths of young Irish women lead Merinda and Jem deeper into the mire of the city’s underbelly, where the high hopes of those dreaming to make a new life in Canada are met with prejudice and squalor.

While searching for answers, donning disguises, and sneaking around where no proper ladies would ever go, they pair with Jasper Forth, a police constable, and Ray DeLuca, a reporter in whom Jem takes a more than professional interest. Merinda could well be Toronto’s premiere consulting detective, and Jem may just find a way to put her bachelor girlhood behind her forever—if they can stay alive long enough to do so.

My thoughts:

Jem, Merinda, Jasper, and Ray. Four characters who personify independence, joy, love, wit, and charisma.

This book, on the surface, is a rollicking good time. Lots of smirks, laughs, intelligence, and a bit of romance. What’s under the surface, however, is what makes this book so fascinating. You have two independent women who are “past an age” for proper society. These are women you’d love to know in real life and have on your side. They’re not trying to fit in with society—they’re trying to find out who they are, and in Jem’s case, come to terms with it.

Jasper and Ray are charmers. Ray was more the focus in this story, and may be a new crush. He is sweet, caring, loyal, compassionate, and has just enough flaws to make you love him that much more. Including his bad poetry. 😉

Rachel McMillan has done a phenomenal job giving us lovable characters in the tempestuous setting of 1910 Toronto.  She’s crafted a fun murder mystery with wit and charm while not shying away from the plight of women and immigrants in Toronto during that time.

This is a book I highly recommend!

*I was given this book for free from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. The thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.

 

Posted in Wedding Wednesday

Wedding Wednesday: Over the Top Glam

Wedding Wednesday (1)

Welcome to my very first Wedding Wednesday!! This is where we bat around fun wedding ideas, themes, drool over dresses, and even rings. So let’s get this party started!

In each of my stories, there’s going to be a wedding. I can’t help it. I just can’t! I blame Pinterest. For real.

So, I’m all about the glam in my little dream world. But that’s not practical. Or cheap. So for our first Wedding Wednesday, I thought about keeping it simple.

I know. I laughed hard at that thought, too.

Glam it is!

Because, in my mind, the wedding revolves around the dress, let’s start there!

The dress:

 

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Ralph Russo Couture Fall/Winter 2014-15

Look at that detail!

The reception venue:

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Article from MODwedding uploaded to Pinterest: http://www.modwedding.com/2015/09/how-to-design-a-glamorous-wedding-reception/

Um…I drool.

The ring:

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Uploaded to Pinterest from Skinner Auctions: https://www.skinnerinc.com/auctions/2586B/lots/620

Because a dress that royal neeeeeeeds a ring this royal.

The cake:

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Made by Liz Gater Sheridan of Fantasy Cakes Fantastic Tastes in Westport, Ireland. Uploaded to Pinterest.

Uh, yes. That is a cake. Shocked me too! It’s gorgeous.

And finally, the flowers:

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Article from MODwedding uploaded to Pinterest: http://www.modwedding.com/2016/01/top-5-glamorous-wedding-trends-2016/

Believe it or not, I had the hardest time choosing flowers! There are so many beautiful bouquets out there, and I was tempted to go with a floral and jeweled bouquet, but with all the other over-the-top glamour, I thought a straight floral cascading bouquet would be elegant.

I admit that this wedding would be a little too much for my personal tastes, but I couldn’t help going glam. I’m a sucker for fairy tales, and this reminds me so much of a fairy tale wedding. I hope you enjoyed!

Posted in Book Review

Review: Always Watching by Lynette Eason

Always Watching

Release date: February 2016

Publisher: Revell Publishing (http://bakerpublishinggroup.com/books/always-watching/349531)

Author’s Web Site: http://www.lynetteeason.com/

From the publisher:

Intensity. Skill. Tenacity.
The bodyguards of Elite Guardians Agency have it all.

When it becomes clear that popular psychiatrist and radio personality Wade Savage has a stalker, his father secretly hires Elite Guardians to protect his son. But when Wade’s bodyguard is attacked and nearly killed, agency owner Olivia Edwards must step in and fill the gap.

Olivia’s skills are about to be tested to the limit as Wade’s stalker moves from leaving innocent gifts at his door to threatening those closest to him–including Olivia. But in her mind, even more dangerous than the threats to her life is the hold her handsome client has on her heart.

My thoughts:

Lynette Eason has always been one of my go-to authors when it comes to romantic suspense. And with Always Watching, she has proven to me (again) just why she is.

Wade and Oliva, the main characters, are normal, everyday people with flaws and issues. One of them loves Jesus. The other is mad at Him. Both characters are very well developed, have a great and fulfilling journey, and the romance, while it’s there, is actually minimal. It’s more of an underlying tension than a romance, which, in the situation the characters are in, I really appreciate.

The suspense of the story sticks with you all the way through. I had about four suspects in the back of my mind the entire story, and one-by-one they were being eliminated close to the end. So while I had my guesses, I didn’t find out too soon or figure it out too easily—the mark of a great book, in my opinion.

I always recommend Lynette’s books, but you definitely need to pick up this first book in the Elite Guardians series! It’s off to a great start! And with the preview of the second book in the back of this one, the next book is also going to be great.

*I was given this book for free from Revell. The thoughts expressed in this review are completely my own.