Sherri Sand – Leave It to Chance Blog Tour (giveaway)

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Author Spotlights, Giveaways

Leave It to Chance by Sherri Sand is another book to add to your fun summer reading list. I enjoyed this sweet story and how everything unfolded. The only thing I found disappointing was reaching the end. Seriously, I wanted to linger a little while longer. :)

About the book:
Sierra Montgomery is a single mom of three struggling to get by. As if facing the possibility of moving back in with her loving mother who does the exact opposite of what Sierra wants isn’t enough, now Sierra has inherited a horse. Her children are delighted, but Sierra has a dark history with these hooved beasts.

Ross Morgan is the handsome landscaper who happens to have an empty field and stall. Against his better judgment, he lets his cousin talk him into boarding a horse for some down-on-her-luck woman and her children. His cousin and the woman’s mother promise him the horse won’t be any trouble at all.

But trouble surrounds both Sierra and Ross. From escapee horses and trampled landscaping to a runaway and near death, these two face their biggest struggles and fears. Will they both allow God to bring them through it?

About Sherri Sand:
Sherri Sand is a wife and mother of four young children who keep her scrambling to stay ahead of the spilled milk. When she needs stress relief from wearing all the hats required to clothe, feed and ferry her rambunctious brood, you’ll find her sitting in a quiet corner of a bistro reading a book (and surrounded by chocolate). Then to elude that calorie consumption you might see her running on the trails throughout Eugene, a city considered to be the running capital of the world. Sherri is a member of The Writer’s View and American Christian Fiction Writers. She finds the most joy in writing when the characters take on a life of their own and she becomes the recorder of their stories. She holds a degree in psychology from the University of Oregon where she graduated cum laude.

Win it:Leave a comment on this post. For a second entry, blog about this contest and then leave a SECOND comment with the url leading directly to the post about this giveaway.

You have until Friday, June 27th to enter. I’ll announce the winners on Saturday, June 28th.

If you haven’t claimed your prize within three days, I’ll have to choose another winner.

For more about Sherri Sand and her book, Leave It to Chance, check out the other blog tour stops.

Important links:
Sherri’s Website
Buy the book

Check out my other giveaway on a dash of sassitude!

Edge of Forbidden (not for young eyes)

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Penning Prose

I woke inspired to write poetry. My wonderful and passionate hubby is often the inspiration for my writing and this morning was no different. I still need to tweak it a bit, but here’s what I’m working with so far:

Just a quick warning – this is on the steamy side, so if you don’t like that sort of thing, I won’t mind if you skip this post.

Edge of Forbidden
One whisper of his lips
Across her delicate skin
Ignites a slow burn

They dance on the
Edge of forbidden
Reason slips away
In passion’s embrace

They taste the fruit
Lapping at the juice
Desperate to consume
Every precious drop until

The hunger eases
The dance slows
Reason comes home

For the moment

I love how God has given us desire, passion, hunger…edgy Christian writing brings in so many emotions most people would rather not explore. But there is a darker side of life and we need to shine God’s truth on it. Temptation is there as it was when Jesus walked in the wilderness. Some give in, but all of us face it in one way or another.

Some of us are called to write the edgier stuff allowing us an opportunity to show others that even though some fall, God can raise them up again. He doesn’t want to leave us in the mire. He longs to fill us with Himself.

We can face temptation and walk away. Our greatest love affair can be with Jesus, Himself.

Do you write edgy Christian writing? What are your thoughts on the subject?

Rachel Hauck – Sweet Caroline Blog Tour Part 2 (recipe)

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Author Spotlights

Now to get to know Rachel Hauck a bit as well as pick up a yummy sounding recipe from Bubba himself.


About Rachel:
I’m a forty-something, a child of the ’60′s, ’70′s, ’80′s, ’90′s and ’00′s.

I roller skated through the ’70′s into the ’80′s with Farrah Fawcet hair and a three-speed orange Camero.

Born in Ohio, I lived several years in Oklahoma and Kentucky before my parents moved the family to Florida.

I graduated from Ohio State University (Go Buckeyes!) with a degree in Journalism. As a member of Phi Mu sorority, I partied my way though the last few years of college.

But, the truth is, and always will be, I belong to Jesus. At the age of six, I knelt at the altar of a Tulsa Methodist church and gave my life to the One who loves me.

After graduation, hired on at Harris Publishing as a software trainer, determined to see the world. And I did it without a laptop, a cell phone, an IPod or portable DVD player. Those were hard times.

But, I traveled to Ireland, Spain, Venezuela, Mexico, Australia, Canada and the U.S. from California to Maine. But, life on the road is difficult. Working twelve to fourteen hour days, one doesn’t get to see many of the sites. In Ireland, our company’s distributor drove me around at night so I could see something of Dublin.

I met Tony, my husband, in ’87, at church, of all places. We got married in ’92. Tony has been a pastor for twenty years. I’ve worked with him in eighteen of those twenty. Our heart is to see teens and adults passionate, radical and whole hearted for Jesus.

Tony and I don’t have any children of our own, lots of kids-in-the-Lord and we love them all. However, we do have a very spoiled dog, and an even more spoiled cat.

I’ve always wanted to be a writer. My dad used to tell me, “You’re a writer.” I have letters he wrote me post college, exhorting me to write. In this, I believe he had the heart of God.

In ’93, I started an epic WW2 novel with two plots. It was well rejected. After that ordeal, I took a break and put efforts into my job as a software project manager. But, I missed writing and in late ‘ 99, I took up the craft again.

With a little help from my friends, my first book was published in ‘ 04, Lambert’s Pride, a romance novel. I love writing chick lit and romance. I love writing. What an honor.

BONUS: here’s a recipe for Bubba’s Buttery Biscuits!
You’ll have to read the book to find out who Bubba is…

3 cups self-rising flour
10 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces and chilled, plus 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted for brushing the tops
1 1/4 cups buttermilk

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Place the flour and chilled butter in a medium mixing bowl. Work the butter into the flour with a pastry cutter, a fork, or your fingertips until the butter pieces are a little larger than an English pea, but not larger than a lima bean. If you are using your fingers, work quickly so that the heat of your hands won’t melt the butter.

Pour in all of the buttermilk and, using light pressure, fold the mixture a few times with a plastic spatula until it holds together. Do not over mix. In order to make light biscuits, it is important to work the dough as little as possible.

Turn the dough out onto a floured board and knead it quickly and gently 6 to 10 times or until it begins to be almost homogenized. There will be large pieces of butter throughout. Sprinkle a little flour under the dough so that it won’t stick to the board and lightly dust the top of the dough so that it won’t stick to the board and lightly dust the top of the dough so that it won’t stick to the rolling pin. Roll the dough out to about 1/2-inch thickness.

Cut the dough into 2-inch rounds, place on an ungreased baking sheet, and bake in the preheated oven for about 15 minutes. I like the biscuits to be crispy and brown on the top and bottom, but not dry in the middle. Remove the baking sheet from the oven and brush the tops of the biscuits with the melted butter. Serve right away. (recipe from Louis Osteen)

Don’t forget to enter Rachel Hauck’s contest and read her book! You can find out more in yesterday’s post.

Rachel Hauck – Sweet Caroline Blog Tour (and Contest)

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Author Spotlights

This post got a little long, so come back tomorrow to find out a little more about Rachel Hauck and to get a delicious sounding recipe from Bubba!

Sweet Caroline is a fun read with quirky characters, a down home country feel and one conflicted Caroline Sweeney. Just when life seems to be heading one way, it delivers a run-down cafe and a famous country music singer from Nashville.

I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and Rachel Hauck’s delightful story-telling style. This is the second book I’ve read of hers (Georgia On My Mind being the first) and I look forward to reading more of her books. Add this one to your summer reading list!

About the book:
Caroline Sweeney has always done the right thing–the responsible, dependable thing–unlike her mother who abandoned her family. But when her best friend challenges her to accept an exciting job adventure in Barcelona, Spain, Caroline says “yes” to destiny.

Then, without warning, ownership of the run-down cafe where she’s been waitressing falls right into Caroline’s lap. While she’s trying to determine the cafe’s future, handsome Deputy Sherriff J.D. Rand captures Caroline’s heart.

But when her first love, Mitch O’Neal, comes back to town, fresh from the heat of his newly-found fame as a country music singer in Nashville, Caroline must make some hard choices about love and the pursuit of the sweet life.

Contest:
The Sweet Life contest! Enter to win a Scrumptious Baking Basket from Rachel. The basket contains a Super Cool Apron, a Low country cook book signed by PAT CONROY, rolling pin, and a pie plate! All you have to do to enter is sign up for Rachel’s newsletter here.

For more information about Rachel and her book, Sweet Caroline, check out the other blog tour stops.

Important links:
Rachel’s website
Buy the book
Rachel’s My Book Therapy (a writing craft blog for writers)

Don’t forget to enter her contest and check out her book!

Don’t forget to come back tomorrow to find out a little more about Rachel Hauck and to get a delicious sounding recipe from Bubba!

Wordless Wednesday – Babywearing Cuteness

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Six Short of a Dozen, Wordless Wednesday

If you’d like to play along or check out other Wordless Wednesday photos, visit 5 Minutes For Mom and Wordless Wednesday.

And the winner is…

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Winner Announcements

Boy, you had to wait for this one huh. Yesterday, right after breakfast, three of the kids opened birthday gifts (we’re a bit behind for two of them). After that crazy fun, I gave four of the kids haircuts, got the kids going on potato salad, went to the store, got everything ready for the BBQ, and then we all headed to the BBQ. We had a blast visiting with friends, but both my hubby and my son’s allergies kicked up pretty bad. The evening ended with my son throwing up all over the blanket he was sitting on. Too much heat and sweet food I think.

Today, another haircut, more errands, and some deep conversations. And here we are. :)

Using the Violets are Blue random generator, we have a winner.

The randomly picked number is: 5

Congratulations, Dianne!

Here’s what Dianne said:

I’m crazy about Christian fiction.

Please email me with your name and address and I’ll get this book out to you soon.

Thanks for entering the giveaway everyone. I have another book giveaway coming your way this week.

Tricia Goyer – A Whisper of Freedom Blog Tour

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Author Spotlights

I’m pleased to host Tricia Goyer for her A Whisper of Freedom Blog Tour.

Tricia Goyer

To make it more fun, she has a meme related to her book going on for her tour. More about that in a bit. :)

About the book: Battles heat up…not only those being waged by the soldiers on both sides fighting for Spain, but in the hearts and minds of the men and women who must sacrifice more than their dreams to save the lives of their loved ones.

A Whisper of Freedom

In this meticulously researched novel, brave and idealistic Sophie, Philip, Jose, and Deion realize their only hope for freedom is escaping Spain’s borders.

By continuing the story of this band of volunteers during the Spanish Civil War, A Whisper of Freedom proves that there are whispers of hope and liberty that resonate through even the darkest night.

About Tricia: Tricia Goyer is the author of twelve books including From Dust and Ashes, My Life UnScripted, and the children’s book, 10 Minutes to Showtime. She won Historical Novel of the Year in 2005 and 2006 from ACFW, and was honored with the Writer of the Year award from Mt. Hermon Writer’s Conference in 2003. Tricia’s book Life Interrupted was a finalist for the Gold Medallion in 2005. In addition to her novels, Tricia writes non-fiction books and magazine articles for publications like Today’s Christian Woman and Focus on the Family. Tricia is a regular speaker at conventions and conferences, and has been a workshop presenter at the MOPS (Mothers of Preschoolers) International Conventions. She and her family make their home in the mountains of Montana.

As part of Tricia’s blog tour, we have a fun meme to answer:

1. List three things you would do with a chest full of gold (assuming you got to keep it!)
Roll around in it for a while. hehe Seriously, pay off all debt!
Buy some land and a home that we fit in a little better (nothing huge).
Give to those who need it anonymously.

2. List three charities/missions/organizations you support (and why).
I actually don’t have any specific charities, missions or organizations I support on a regular basis. We have given to people as we’ve heard of a need anonymously. I really enjoy blessing people, but I don’t want them to ever feel like they owe me or anything. Nor do I like attention drawn to our helping them.

3. List three ways you have volunteered your time/services.
I started a support group for homeschooling moms in our area.
I helped clean up after an event at another church.
Honestly, most of my time is spent mothering and home educating my six kids. I do try and help here and there.

4. List three things you keep “hidden” when company comes over.
Sometimes my room.
Sometimes the kids’ rooms.
Dirty laundry. hehe

5. List the last three things you’ve lost.
My mind. Frequently.
The book I need when I need it.
Keys.

6. List the last three things you’ve found.
My mind.
The book when I no longer need it.
My keys.

That was fun. Who am I tagging? YOU! Make sure you come back and leave a comment, so I can read your answers. Three brave “players” will be selected at random to win their own lost gold (Gourmet chocolate coins and all three books in the Chronicles of the Spanish Civil War series). To enter all you have to do is answer the MEME on your blog and then leave a comment on Tricia’s blog tour post here that you’ve posted your MEME. Easy.

During the tour, you can enter to win one of FIVE signed copies of A Whisper of Freedom by signing up for Tricia’s newsletter here!

Links:
Book excerpt: http://triciagoyer.com/cmsdocuments/WhisperCh1.doc

Buy the book: http://www.amazon.com/Whisper-Freedom-Chronicles-Spanish-Civil

Watch the series trailer: http://cg.creativenuclei.com/wip/TriciaGoyer/cscw.html

Tricia’s website: http://triciagoyer.com

Tricia’s Blogs: http://triciagoyer.com/blogs.html

To visit other stops on the blog tour, click here.

Book Giveaways Around the Net

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Giveaways

Check out the following giveaways:

Robyn is hosting a book giveaway on her blog, I Love Give-A-Ways!! Go check it out for your chance to win The Black Cloister by Melanie Dobson. The deadline is Sunday, May 18th, 9:00 pm (CST).

Tami from Tree Swing Reading has lots of book giveaways. Scroll down and enter to win the ones that interest you. Just be sure to check the deadlines on each. :)

Book Giveaway: The Negotiator by Dee Henderson

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: Giveaways

I found this book gently used and thought I’d snatch it up for my readers here. The edge of the book is a bit dusty, but other than that, it’s in great shape. If you haven’t read any of Dee Henderson’s O’Malley series, allow me to introduce you to some great summer time reading.

I first read the series years ago and I still feel like I actually know the O’Malley family. Dee pulls you into their story and keeps you hooked to the end. She blends suspense and romance with a solid plot and strong characters. I laughed and cried my way through as I tried to figure out who was behind the threats in each story.

Want to read the first chapter of each book? Check out Dee Henderson’s website.

Win it:
1. Leave a comment here for your chance to win Book 1 of the O’Malley series. (There is a prequel – DANGER IN THE SHADOWS – you might want to read first, but it isn’t necessary.) You must answer this question to qualify: What genre do you enjoy reading most?

Extra entries:
1. Subscribe to this blog and then leave a comment saying you did. If you’re already a subscriber, let me know. I’ll be having more giveaways and introducing more great authors, so don’t miss out.

2. Post about this giveaway on your blog and then leave a separate comment letting me know the url linking directly to your post.

You have up to three possible entries, but you have to leave a separate comment for each thing you do, to make it easier for me to count the entries.

You have until Friday, May 16th to enter. I’ll announce the winners on Saturday, May 17th.

Make sure I have a way of contacting you or come back to see if you have won and then email me. If you haven’t claimed your prize within three days, I’ll have to choose another winner.

See my other giveaway here.

So Here We Are Again…

Author: Audra Marie  //  Category: This 'N' That

The four youngest and I are SICK! AGAIN. I really can’t believe how this winter has gone. I had my youngest in a wrap on my back today so she could sleep upright. She couldn’t sleep through her cough. I’m hoping the weather will stabilize and hopefully we can kick this once and for all.

I also hope we have much stronger immune systems by next winter.

Anyway, my giveaway will be this coming Monday. I’m nursing my kids and myself back to health this week. I have a couple of blog tours I’m hosting this month as well. Stay tuned.