Tag Archive | Paula Mowery

Spatzle Speaks: Lamp Unto Her Feet (Book Review)

Paula Mowery’s latest book, Lamp Unto Her Feet, released in September, and I’m a little behind in getting my reviews posted, so please forgive me. Mom’s been busy on the computer so getting my paws on the keyboard has been a challenge. But this is not a novel you want to miss out on as Ms. Mowery writes a delightful inspirational romance.

Kenzi Murrah is fighting against the expectations of her parents. She has her own dreams that don’t coincide with theirs so what’s a girl to do? Take a job in a town farther away so you can establish your own life independent of your parents’ vision for your future, even though they disagree.

What Kenzi does take with her though is a special Bible from her Nana Nita with notes and verses highlighted for her to follow. The strange thing is the verses have an eerie way of becoming extremely relevant to what is happening in her life.

Trevor Wallen is a police officer in a small Tennessee town, trying to restore a tarnished reputation. he desires to cling to God but longs for a woman to share his faith and life.

As love blooms between the two, difficulties emerge that threaten to keep them apart. Kenzie becomes reluctant to read her Bible for fear of the hard times that may threaten her faith and her new-found love. Trevor just might find his career choice a threat as well.

Together and separately the need to learn to depend on God’s word for any chance at a happily-ever-after.

This is a sweet story of the trials and travails of love and the real-life challenges that come to force us to grapple with our faith. Ms. Mowery paints those themes with beauty and grace and I will gladly give this novel five bones. Because I’m a dog and I don’t have thumbs.

Spatzle Baganz, book reviewer for the silygoos blog because that’s how we roll.

 

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Spatzle Speaks: Crux of Honor (Book Review)

crux of honorMom told me Paula wrote a fascinating romance in her novella, Crux of Honor. This is book 6 in the “Love is . . .” series by Prism Book Group illuminating “love does not dishonor others.”

When Chelsea Wilson breaks up with her Amish boyfriend who decided to return to the fold, she didn’t forsee the consequences his Rumpspringa would have on her future beyond a broken heart. She had been banished from her parent’s home for her association with the young man and now, pregnant and alone, she would lose her current apartment as well.

Dr. Kevin Alley returned home from a stint in Iraq to work in his small hometown. The last thing he expected was to run into his long-lost love, Chelsea. When she shares just how she’s messed up her life since he’d last seen her, compassion compells him to help out. Giving her a place to live and assistance as she navigates her challenges he keeps his hands off and his heart locked tight.

Chelsea learns about what true love is from Kevin’s respect and care for her. I don’t want to give away too much of the story but the journey they take is a powerful one and Kevin lives up to the idea of a gentleman of honor. As a dog I have to give this five bones because honor is a noble virtue. And I dont’ do stars. I’m a dog.

5 bones for blog

Spatzle Baganz, book reviewer for the silygoos blog because that's how we roll.

Spatzle Baganz, book reviewer for the silygoos blog because that’s how we roll.

Love’s Christmas Novellas (Book Reviews)

I should have had this post of up weeks ago but seemed to be deficient in remembering how to enter my blog (in spite of my notes to the contrary. Holiday ditziness? I apologize for that but it is still possible for you to get these books in time for Christmas – definitely on your e-reader (.99 each!) or to get the print copies. Because of this delay I’m not waiting to post this on Friday as I normally would!

I have to confess that with these compilations – I’ve not had a chance to read EVERY novella but since they come from Prism Book Group I’m confident they are great stories!

Love’s Christmas PAST

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FRAGILE BLESSINGS (Susan M. Baganz)

Is it vain for me to promote my own novella first? I wrote this because I was intrigued with pioneer life and set it in my home state of Wisconsin out where my grandparents were raised and lived. I’ve always been fascinated with way people deal with death and in our day and age we expect so much of modern medicine. But back then? They didn’t have the answers . . . so how would one young couple cope? The story took me places I didn’t expect as Grant and Lily live through unexpected tragedy and blessings. I hope you’ll enjoy their journey to love and hope as much as I did writing it.

A MEDIEVAL CHRISTMAS (Rachel A. James)

Tales of old with noble (and not so honorable) knights and ladies of grace and beauty. Set at Christmas-time this story explores the journey of young Nola as she faces the consequences of believing the pretty lies of a nobleman who turns out to be a skunk. When the solution is not as noble as she would prefer and out of a desperate desire to save her family from scandal, Ms. James takes Lady Nola on a journey fraught with danger, wonder and a chance for love if she’s brave enough to accept it.

CHRISTMAS BELLS (Jewell Tweedt)

This is the one story I’ve not yet read but look forward to perhaps during Christmas break. Ms. Tweedt tells a tale of a widow, Connie Rose Simonson, who manages two cafe’s on the frontier and seeking the perfect Christmas for her son. Dr. James Connor has poured out himself in caring for the citizens of an influenza ravaged town. From the description of her story it sounds like heavenly intervention helps these two lonely souls find love. I’m looking forward to reading it!

 

Love’s Christmas PRESENT 

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LOVE AGAIN (Paula Mowery)

Ms. Mowery has a gift for sweet romances and this novella is no exception. Ben Jacobsen has suffered the loss of his wife which meant abandoning his military career to care for his two young children. He moves back in with his parent’s in Myrtle Beach to start life afresh with his in-laws seeking to defeat him at every turn.

Jenna Campbell has moved to the same town to work as a Children’s minister. Coming off a dysfunctional relationship with a guy, she’s not really interested in romance. But something about helping the young widower with his children might have her changing her mind.

But could Ben love again without betraying the memory of his deceased wife?

BACKWARDS CHRISTMAS (Brooke Williams)

Brooke Williams writes a tale filled with humor and adventure. Noelle Richards lives in South Pole, Alaska and enjoys all the holiday festivities of the Backwards Christmas the town celebrates.

Chris Furst has disdain for the holiday. As a sled-dog trainer he loves two things: his dogs and Noelle Richards. The one thing he’s not in love with is CHristmas and the reason for the season. Jesus.

When Chris finds his life in danger though, the tables turn and he’s the one in need of rescue and Noelle and Christ are his only hopes. Maybe love can redeem the holiday for him after all.

ALL’S FAIR IN LOVE & ARSON (Sharon McGregor)

I can hardly wait to read this novella by Sharon McGregor. It sounds like a fun romantic suspense! Bella comes home to care for her injured mother, run her mom’s shop and apparently also needs to take on her mom’s role in the Christmas theater production, a musical o less! The theme is a well-known mystery that seems more bizarre as the days progress. Add in a serial arsonist and the fact that her high school sweetheart, Jake, is now police chief and the holiday is going to be like nothing she or this town had ever seen before.

These books are all fabulous gifts – for you or for someone you love who enjoys reading. So order quickly and snuggle up over the holiday, with your favorite hot beverage, the lights on the tree and a fuzzy blanket and enjoy these novellas filled with warmth, romance and adventure. I know that’s what I’ll be doing!

Merry Christmas! 

 

For Our Good (Book Review)

For Our Good book coverAuthor Paula Mowery departs from her romantic fiction to add suspense into her latest offering, For Our Good.

Our heroine, Charlie Jarvis has suffered some painstaking losses as a result of her pursuit of drug-traffickers.

After her latest loss she gets an unexpected undercover assignment–back in her hometown where her most painful memories are buried. She returns to do her job and finds herself dismayed that it includes attending a church where suspects might be. She has abandoned her faith a long time ago but is determined to do her job, even if it means sitting in a building where people worship the God who killed everyone she loves.

Colton Thomas is a free-wheeling corporate pilot who is intrigued by the dark-haired beauty.

He’s also tempted by the chance to earn large sums of money delivering packages. His partner, Marshall interferes with this desire much to his frustration. Charlie challenges him in a different way, by making him want to be the kind of man she would want in her life. He’s forced to look harder at his own life and walk with God before he can ever help her with her own.

Charlie likes Colton but struggles with the lies she’s had to tell as part of her undercover work.

Friends she makes in her old hometown shine God’s light with painful regularity and encourage the relationship between the two. But the air needs to be cleared and the drug dealers brought to justice before healing can take place and God can once again restore life, love and faith for them both.

This book is a great look at the power of love and faith, first with God and then in relationship with others.

It confronts the sometimes superstitious thoughts we attach to God when bad things happen, and how we can allow those to keep us from growing closer to Him. I really enjoyed this story and the characters in it. She created an entire group of people to become acquainted with and she deftly tells the tale of more than Colton and Charlie’s journey because the reality is, we never walk this path of faith alone, and Paula illustrates that beautifully.

Available in print and ebook versions.

Confessions of a Newbie Editor

A year ago I took a step of faith and became part of the Prism Book Group team, taking on the role of Acquisitions Editor. This article is not an attempt to brag, but more of a confession of sorts. prism logo

Lessons: I had never been an editor before, so there was a learning curve. Here is some of what I learned:

  • I discovered how much fear held me back until I had to push against deadlines to make sure my authors had books ready for publication.
  • I relished how good it feels to give an author that contract – and to celebrate with them when their dreams are in print for the world to read. 
  • I’ve developed a way of giving rejections that takes some of the sting out and helps writers grow. I may not contract them but I do still care. This was the scariest part of taking the job. I still don’t like to do it but at least I don’t crush dreams (or try not to).
  • I delight in encouraging authors at conferences.  

People. All the highlights this past year have shown up in the form of relationships:  

Lisa Lickel is the person who passed along the job opportunity with Prism. At first I couldn’t believe it. You think I could do what? But I asked friends, took a test (and passed) and prayed about it. Then I took the plunge and have not regretted it. She became the first author (in a group of four) that I signed. She protested, “I didn’t tell you to get the job so you would publish me!” I’m glad I did, as Brave New Century was a huge revelation. I worked with four different authors and stories all at once. Do you know how intimidating it was to edit an editor’s work as well as when she is a dear friend? She must not have minded Prism at all as she just came out with another novel, The Last Detail, in January. Because it wasn’t a strict romance, fellow editor Marcy Dyer did the honors of working on that book.

Anita Klumpers entrusted her debut novel to me and worked her butt off with such cheerfulness. Anything I threw at her she took and was grateful. Her attitude was such a bolster to me and a bit frightening. Sure. She had never been through this process before. But neither had I. Her novel was released on January 22nd. Just coming up the the title, Winter Watch, with her was an adventure in and of itself. I loved every minute.

Daisy Jerico also entrusted me with her fun novella and delivered the best pitch I ever heard to date. She talked like she loved her characters and she was telling the story of something that happened to a close friend. The Love Thief ebook has done well and if you want sassy and suspenseful romance – that book is pure delight. I must not have done too bad with her as she signed with me again. Sparks Fly is due out in July. Oh, and we’ve had coffee together and both emerged victorious during 2013’s NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month).

Paula Mowery was part of an anthology I had contracted and became interested in doing my job. Well, not my job, but the same position. There’s plenty of great fiction to go around! I have now worked with her on not one – but two books! Brave New Century released in November of 2013 and Love and Legacy released March 19, 2014.

Jacqueline Hopper is another Acquisitions Editor at Prism Book Group and an author in her own right. She has been a great support and willing to answer all kinds of questions to the newbie on the block. She helps with scheduling reviews and making teasers and trailers for our books. (Check out her novella The Gingerbread House!)

I also had the honor of working a repeat Prism author, Penelope Marzec on her book Patriot’s Heart which released in February.

Finally, I have to mention Joan Alley, the owner, and Editor-in-Chief of Prism Book Group. She was willing to take a chance on me and I am grateful she did as I have learned so much in the process about writing, about speaking, and about myself.

I’ll be honest. I did this as a way to earn a little income while waiting for my own books to come to print.

I gained something far more valuable in the process, and I am grateful.

Legacy and Love (Book Review)

LegacyandLove_ebook2 copy (1)The book, Legacy and Love by Paula Mowery is not just a book. In reality it is two romance novellas put together because they have similar themes of which the title represents.

The first story in the book is The Prayer Shawl. Sean Holland has dismissed the Christian faith and is living his life as a magazine reporter. Challenged by his editor to find a new story, he stumbles across Hope, a nurse at the hospital who makes prayer shawls for people who are sick.

Hope learned to make the shawls from the grandmother who has since died. With a strong faith in God she knits them together with love and a lot of prayer. Sean sees a story, but when multiple crisis hit Sean’s life, he turns to Hope for help. She has to decide how much to provide given the lack of his faith in God.

Inheritance is the second story in the book. Alex Lyndon has lost her job, is divorced and with little money in the bank. She discovers, on top of all that, her Granny Olivia, her only family left, is dying. She rushes to her side but is too late to talk much to her one last time. Instead her Granny has set her on a search with a cryptic message.

A mysterious check shows up along with a handsome man. Chase Carson is a book editor who ended up taking over the reigns of his family’s publishing company. His one get-away is to go see Granny Olivia only this time he arrives to find she has died. He’s heard about Alex but Alex has not heard about him nor had any clue of the secret Chase kept for Granny. Together they search for clues to the inheritance left, the missing document he needs and the purpose Alex has been desitined for all along. But can love survive the miles and the secrets still held? 

Two grandmothers with amazing legacies that impact far more than the people they leave them to. The butterfly effect is how one action can have a ripple throught time and impact, potentially, millions. This book tells two stories of such impacts in a beautiful way.

Brave New Century (Book Review)

Brave new century final coverBrave New Century is a lovely quartet of four novellas. Four women in search of their identity in the new century, 1900. The time is filled challenges, triumphs and responsibilities. Four stories. Four lives. Four loves. (Click here for a link to the print version of the book)

In the first story, Three Rings for Alice, Lisa Lickel highlights Alice Smith’s struggles to be a modern woman. Orphaned, she has to make her own way in the world and in a time when women are just coming into the workforce, it is fraught with uncertainty. Vowing to never marry, time and a secret love changes her mind with a decision to marry for no less than love. Even if the one she loves is only known as a voice on the telephone.

Paula Mowery’s tale, Forgiven, brings us Jessie Lee Capelle who wonders if she will ever have a loving family. When she meets laborer Henry Smith her dreams look like they will come true. When a surprising twist of history is revealed, can their love withstand the truth. Can they forgive?

In The Pocket Watch, Kathleen Rouser weaves a tale of Isabel Jones, an orphan in Detroit Michigan who’s only real desire is to know who her parents were. An accident brings her into the world of Dr. Daniel Harper and a pocket watch brings them together even as a special ring, left by Isobel’s mother, threatens to reveal terrible truths. Can love withstand these obstacles?

Teena Stewart tells the final story, Flames of Hope.  Lily McMinn’s Irish family operates a thriving mercantile n San Francisco. She enjoys visits by Gideon Light, a police officer. When a  violent earthquake destroys much of the city, countless people die. The crippled fire department is helpless to fight multiple fires raging out of control. Can Lily and her family survive the tragedy with the help of Gideon?

Love, romance, history. Four different stories but with these uniting themes. Step back in time and enjoy the journey these four women make. You’ll be glad you did.