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review 2020-02-18 15:56
Resistance Women
Resistance Women - Jennifer Chiaverini

Mildred Harnack, Sara Weitz, Greta Kuckoff and Martha Dodd all come from different backgrounds.  Mildred is a doctoral student from Wisconsin and married to Arvid, a German. Sara is a literary student and Jewish. Greta is an aspiring author who loves theatre and Martha is the daughter of the US Ambassador to Germany.  These four women are living in 1930's Germany as Hitler rises to power and witness first hand the terror, hatred, destruction and lies that spreads throughout the country.  The women find each other and vow to resist the Reich in any way they can.  Mildred continues teaching, helping her students think for themselves as well as passing on information to Martha at the US Embassy.  Martha's vivacious nature helps her to make many friends around the Embassy that talk to her about their parents work.  Greta translates works so that other countries can read about Hitler's terrifying words.  Sara passes out flyer and posts stickers all over Berlin.  All of the women know the price they will pay if caught, and all are willing to risk it for their futures.

History has a way of forgetting the women who have had an impact.  Mildred Harnack, Martha Dodd and Greta Kuckoff were all real women that were part of the resistance network dubbed the Rote Kapelle.  From the opening where Mildred is imprisoned and still fighting, I knew I was going to love these characters.  The writing flows between each of the four characters point of views beginning in 1929 and ending in 1946.  This gives a full perspective of where each character came from before the war as well as how Hitler's ideologies were able to slowly infiltrate, take over and become the norm for Germany.  This also highlights how aware and free thinking that each woman had to be in order to not be swept up the ideals. Each woman's resistance ranges from small acts of passing along lists or putting up stickers to full out defiance of passing along coded radio messages and making sure written works make it to other countries.  Throughout everything that happened, Mildred, Sara, Greta and Martha never wavered in the convictions. Chiaverini's writing dives deep into their individual thoughts and feelings to let the women's power shine through.  Inspiring and thoughtful, Resistance Women  is a story of women from our past that will resonate with many people today.
This book was received for free in return for an honest review.

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text 2020-02-18 05:00
Leaving Texas Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!

About the Book

Book:  Leaving Texas

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: January 2, 2020

I know the plans I have for you, plans for good, not evil.

Cruel is the illusion of love. Robbed of her true love by his mean-spirited mother, Charity is given no choice but to leave Texas and follow her Prince Charming to the Golden State. Instantly attracted to her, Morgan agrees to help the young beauty on her journey, but where all other ladies paled after first blush, his initial fascination only deepens with every turn of the wagon’s wheels. Though obvious to all those around the two—how perfect Morgan and Charity were for each other—will the hard-headed, strong-willed daughter of Liberty O’Neal Harrell ever realize it?   

Click HERE for your copy!

About the Author

Praying her story gives God glory, award-winning author Caryl McAdoo continues prolificity with her new Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga series. Readers around the world enjoy her best-selling novels and shower them with 5-Star ratings galore. With forty-eight titles—and counting—her love for writing is obvious; the lady loves singing the new songs the Lord gives her as well! (Check out YouTube). Caryl gave Ron four children and the couple shares eighteen grandsugars. The McAdoos live in the woods south of Clarksville, the seat of Red River County, in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door.

More from Caryl


As my second family saga series—Cross Timbers Romance—grows, and the children of Book One GONE TO TEXAS come into adulthood, I fall more in love with these characters. This story—Book Four in the series, LEAVIN’ TEXAS, takes readers on another wagon train that historically left right about the same time of year as its early spring setting from Red River County, heading for California in 1850.

LEAVIN’ TEXAS is Charity O’Neal’s story wherein she determines to follow her Prince Charming, Eberhart ‘Hart’ de Vecchi, to California to start her new life with him there—no matter the naysayers or rough trails ahead. But as so often is the case, our plans and those God has in place for us don’t always correlate.

Many times, we’ve prayed about it—what we want Him to do, how we expect everything to turn out—and feel certain we are in His will. I personally thank God for praying mothers, friends, and grandmothers who perhaps see us heading in a wrong direction and beseech Him to guide us in His way, not our own.

My life has benefitted from such praying women.
So does Charity O’Neal’s.
I imagine yours has as well!

I love the well-known verse in Jeremiah! “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” Jeremiah 29:11 Especially the ‘expected end’ part. I find great comfort in knowing His thoughts—or plans—are of peace and not evil, and that He intends to give us an expected end!

I hope you enjoy LEAVING TEXAS and will take time to review it!

Author Interview


Welcome, Caryl!


Sarah, thank you so much for inviting me to your blog! I’m thrilled to be here and have the opportunity to meet your friends and readers!

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

Well, I suppose you might call it a quirk, considering I’m an author. I’m giggling now, telling on myself like this, but I never took typing in school. I didn’t want to be a secretary—not that there’s anything wrong with being a secretary, I just couldn’t imagine being chained to a desk all day; I wanted to have a secretary!
So anyway, the quirk is that I type by the Bible. More specifically, by Matthew 7:7 that says, “Seek and ye shall find!”

Is there a particular literary period that you’re drawn to (Regency, Victorian, Romantic, Modernism, etc.)? Why?

You know, the whole world loves Texas! Do you know how we have Renaissance Festivals and Civil War Reenactments in our country? Well all around the world, people in other countries have Wild West events like those where vendors dress up like cowboys and Indians and have a blast!

I live in Texas and am drawn to its early days, a period where generations not so far removed worked hard, loved true, and worshipped God. Women dressed modestly (unless they were soiled doves) and kept the home fires going, while men went out and provided for their families!


Daughters were highly valued as a great treasure and chaperoned when courters started calling. The norm in that era was remaining pure until marriage. Mothers could let the children run free outside and play all day, coming home before dark without worrying they would be snatched up by a bad man.

I love those days and the values they adhered to!

Describe your book in five words.

Missionary, Miracles, Adoption, Obedience, Overcoming

Who is your biggest inspiration?

My husband is my co-author on all the stories and biggest inspiration by far in my life. He is zenith of all my heroes rolled into one and the most Christ-like man I know. Don’t you love my heroes? See how blessed I am? And it’s our joint love of God that inspires us to write our characters.

I pray my story gives God glory!

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?

Hear from God, study to show yourself approved, then start writing and don’t quit! The more you study before you write, the less rewrites you’ll have to do, but re-write, you will even though rewriting isn’t nearly as fun as writing! Remember this tough---Only God writes in stone, the rest of us rewrite!

P.S. (a blatant commercial advertisement) STORY & STYLE, The Craft of Writing Creative Fiction is a great book packed with everything I’ve learned in all the years up to its publication. It’s written in an easy-to-understand, conversational format with lots of examples!


Thanks again, Sarah, for inviting me to come visit! I appreciate you choosing to participate in my Leaving Texas Blog Tour with Celebrate Lit! Blessings!


My pleasure! Thank you so much for joining us!


Blog Stops


Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 13

deb’s Book Review, February 14

Texas Book-aholic, February 15

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, February 16

Inklings and notions, February 17

For the Love of Literature, February 18 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 19

Betti Mace, February 20

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, February 21

janicesbookreviews, February 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 23

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, February 24

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 25 (Author Interview)

Artistic Nobody, February 26 (Guest Reviewer Donna Cline)




To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


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review 2020-02-17 08:00
Lost in the Storm Review and GIVEAWAY!


About the Book


Book:  Lost in the Storm

Author: Tamera Lynn Kraft

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: August 1, 2019

Will war bring them love or will they be Lost in the Storm!

Lavena, a journalist during the Civil War, wants to become a war correspondent. She finally gets her chance, but there’s a catch. She has to get an interview from a war hero who has refused to tell his story to every other journalist, and she has to accomplish this impossible task in a month or she’ll lose her job.

Captain Cage, the war hero, has a secret that will destroy his military career and reputation. Now, a new journalist is trying to get him to tell what he’s been hiding. He wants to ignore her, but from the moment she came into camp, he can’t get her out of his mind.

Leading up to the turbulent Battles for the city of Chattanooga, will Lavena and Cage find the courage to love and forgive, or will they be swept away by their past mistakes that don’t want to stay buried?

Meet the Ladies of Oberlin, the causes they’re willing to fight for, and the men who capture their hearts.

Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author


Award winning author Tamera Lynn Kraft has always loved adventures. She loves to write historical fiction set in the United States because there are so many stories in American history. There are strong elements of faith, romance, suspense and adventure in her stories. Alice’s NotionsRed Sky Over AmericaLost in the StormResurrection of Hope, and Soldier’s Heart are among her published works.

Tamera been married for 40 years to the love of her life, Rick, and has two married adult children and three grandchildren. She has been a children’s pastor for over 20 years. She is the leader of a ministry called Revival Fire for Kids where she mentors other children’s leaders, teaches workshops, and is a children’s ministry consultant and children’s evangelist and has written children’s church curriculum. She is a recipient of the 2007 National Children’s Leaders Association Shepherd’s Cup for lifetime achievement in children’s ministry.

More from Tamera


History is my Passion

I love to read all genres of Christian fiction, but when I go to write, it always ends up being a Christian historical. The reason for that is I have a passion for history. I love to read about historical events, and frequently, I begin wondering what it would be like to live through those chaotic events in history. Out of that thought process, my characters and my stories take on a life of their own.

For instance, my series, Ladies of Oberlin, came out of reading about the great Christian women who advance social and spiritual movements in the late 1800s. I found over and over that the common denominator of these women was they all had a connection with Oberlin College, the first college that allow women and black to receive degrees alongside white men before the Civil War. I gained a treasure trove of research from a college only an hour away from where I lived.

As I researched Oberlin, I found out it was in the middle of every social and spiritual movement of the time. Charles Finney, the fiery Second Great Awakening evangelist, was the president of the college. Ninety percent of missionaries sent overseas between 1860 and 1900 were graduates of the college. Many of the women’s suffrage leaders, women’s educational leaders, women doctors and scholars, abolitionists, and prohibitionist leaders were from Oberlin College. At that point, I knew I wanted to tell their stories in my novels. I decided to write three stories covering three college roommates.

My first novel in the series set shortly before the Civil War was Red Sky Over America, the story of America Leighton, a woman abolitionist who was studying to become a missionary in China. She decided she couldn’t make a stand for the Gospel in China until she confronted her father to free his slaves. To make things more interesting, her love interest has plans of his own in Kentucky. The results were explosive as you can imagine.

The second in the series, released August first, is Lost in the Storm set during the Civil War. Lavena Falcon is determined to be an independent woman who advances the causes she believes in by being a journalist. Her greatest desire is to travel to where the heroic Ohio Seventh Regiment is fighting and report about these brave men. The problem is if she doesn’t get an interview with an illusive captain who doesn’t want to talk to reporters, she’ll lose her job. It doesn’t help that she’s attracted to him.

The third novel, due to release late next year, is set shortly after the Civil War in Northeast Ohio. Betsy Teagan’s husband is back from the war, but things aren’t going according to plan. He is haunted by the war and finds solace in the local saloon drinking himself into oblivion. She tries everything to help him including protesting in front of the bar.

My Review


A seminal period in American history, the Civil War stands as a stark reminder of the cost of division and enslavement. In an increasingly polarized world, remembering the transgressions of the past becomes ever more important in order to avoid falling into similar patterns of wickedness. This is one of the ways that literature serves society, through both nonfiction and fiction, and it’s one of the reasons that historical fiction is my favorite genre. As such, I am always on the lookout for new authors to add to my to-read list, and I am delighted to have found one in Tamera Lynn Kraft and this second book in the Daughters of Oberlin series. It can stand alone, but there is some background mentioned in this story.

Opening in September 1863 in Cleveland, Ohio, “Lost in the Storm” immediately appealed to me for a variety of reasons. As an Ohio native, I am somewhat familiar with the geography, and on a more abstract level, I was drawn to the title and cover. Before long, the characters became dear to me as well. I empathized with Betsy Teagan in the first few chapters and hope to read more of her story in the next book. Lavena Falcon is an early suffragette and the sole female reporter for The Cleveland Leader. A graduate of Oberlin College, she is determined to become the war correspondent for both laudable and personal reasons. As the story unfolds, the anger that she harbors in her heart collides with unexpected attraction. Similarly, Cage skirts the issue of talking about the event that made him a war hero. Both are hiding shameful events from their pasts that continue to haunt their futures and the present.

Kraft also skillfully writes about the privations of war without employing graphic details. Indeed, “War caused so much heartache.” This was the first I had heard of sutlers, and these merchants certainly harmed those they served, offering the temptation to fall into alcohol and fornication. I felt sorrow and compassion for the soldiers in this story, including Nate, for the horrors that they experienced at such young ages, for being there for their fellow soldiers on both sides and often losing their friends. Most of all, I appreciate the hope and redemption that the author weaves into the narrative, demonstrating that God truly never leaves nor forsakes us, and that He is able to turn every situation into good for those who love Him.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops


Through the Fire Blogs, February 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 9

Texas Book-aholic, February 10

deb’s Book Review, February 11

Betti Mace, February 12

Inklings and notions, February 13

Artistic Nobody, February 14 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 15

Simple Harvest Reads, February 16 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 16

For the Love of Literature, February 17

My Devotional Thoughts, February 18

A Baker’s Perspective, February 19 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 20

By The Book, February 21 (Author Interview)

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, February 21




To celebrate her tour, Tamera is giving away the grand prize package of a a $25 gift certificate and 3 paperbacks: Red Sky Over America, Lost in the Storm, and Forks in the Road!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


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review 2020-02-16 10:18
The Last Refuge of the Knights Templar
The Last Refuge of the Knights Templar - William F. Mann

by William F. Mann


This was totally different from what I expected. I have a historical interest in the Knights Templar, who were disbanded and mostly executed in 1309. I didn't know that the Freemasons had adopted the name for their own organisation, although I've seen other modern groups do the same.


This story is set in American Civil War times and centered on a historical figure called Albert Pike, who was a general in the Confederate army and a Freemason.


The writing was reasonably good, apart from some of the dialogue, but this just isn't an area of interest for me. I feel the book is mis-titled, though I should have read the description more closely. The first few lines supported the impression that it would actually be about the Knights Templar from the title.


If someone wants to read about Civil War Confederacy and Freemasonry of the time, this should appeal. The connections to the Templars are certainly pure fiction though.

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text 2020-02-14 16:53

And because I do write my own novels, too, here's a quick look at the scene where the heroine meets the hero (although of course, they don't know that yet).



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