Out of Darkness Excerpt + Giveaway

About the Story:

When her husband is killed by a car bomb on their wedding day, Elisabeth literally watches her dreams go up in smoke.  Three years later, she’s beginning to figure out life without Drew—with the help of his best friend and CIA partner Gabe. But Drew returns, and they must rebuild what was lost with international arms dealers on their trail and an ever shrinking list of people they can trust. Gabe should be at the top of that list, but his feelings for Elisabeth may stand in the way. All three of them end up in a fight for their lives that will test their loyalty to God, country, and each other.

Excerpt:

People pressed in around her, the same faces that had been smiling last week when Drew was at her side, except they’d traded in their festive colors for black and gray. Most of them simply hugged her and told her how sorry they were. Some cried too. A few tried to encourage her with well-intentioned but infuriating platitudes.

After hearing “he’s in a better place” one too many times, she wanted to scream. I don’t care! I want him here with me where he belongs.

“You look like you could use some fresh air.” Gabe’s hand cupped her elbow. “Wanna get out of here for a while?”

“Oh, I uh… I’m not sure I’m allowed to leave.”

“I don’t think anyone’s gonna try and stop you. And if they do, I’m packin’ heat.”

She let one corner of her mouth tilt up. “What about—?”

“I already cleared it with Mel and your mom. Let’s go.”

She didn’t argue. They went out the back doors, so she didn’t have to see the charred pavement across the street. He led her toward the little park and picnic shelter behind the church. Her heels dug into the dirt as they walked the path through the woods—which was more like fifteen or twenty trees grouped together, but had seemed like a forest when she and Drew played hide and seek there as kids.

Gabe laid his jacket down on the bench and gestured for her to sit. She arched an eyebrow. “Gabe, I could buy five of these dresses for what that suit cost.”

He rolled his eyes. “Would you please just sit? It’ll make me feel better… and it’s more like ten.”

She punched him lightly in the arm and sat, taking a deep breath. Everything felt lighter out here—like a harbor away from the storm. She closed her eyes and tipped her head back, feeling the breeze. Maybe hoping to catch just a whisper of Drew as it lifted her hair. But all she felt was Gabe.​

Giveaway:

Click on the image or Rafflecopter link to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author:

Erynn Newman is a pastor’s kid, raised in churches all over the Eastern Seaboard. Since earning her degree in Christian Studies, she has traveled the world and served as a missionary, a counselor, an ESL teacher, and a nanny. Though she has never worked with the CIA, her DVR contains a veritable Who’s Who of international spies. She is a Carolina girl, a wife, and Mama to a very busy little boy, two cats, and a gaggle of characters that live inside her head.

Connect with Erynn through her website, Facebook, and Twitter.

Purchase Out of Darkness and the prequel novella First Light on Amazon, or subscribe to Erynn’s newsletter to receive the novella for free.

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Rescue Me (Montana Rescue #2) by Susan May Warren

Genre: Romance
Publisher: Revell
Publication Date: January 2017

Deputy Sam Brooks doesn’t do anything half way — not his job with the sheriff’s department, his liaison position with PEAK Rescue, or his relationship with Sierra Rose. After all, safe, dependable and structured Sierra is perfect for him, and he’ll do anything to prove it to her, including help lead a church youth event with her polar-opposite sister.

Willow has loved Sam for as long as she can remember, but after her sister’s recent heartbreak, Sierra deserves a HEA (happily-ever-after) and Sam can give it to her. Not to mention, Willow has more important things to focus on than the handsome deputy, like landing the youth pastor job at her church. But when an outing to the Glacier National Park goes horribly wrong, more than just hearts are at stake. Sam and Willow must join forces to get the teenagers and themselves out alive.

Susan May Warren’s Rescue Me delivers an exhilarating and nail-biting journey of survival. Days after closing the book, I still felt the rain pelting my skin and the cold that burrowed deep in my bones. Warren masterfully brought the setting to life from the towering trees, freezing water, and narrow ledges. I endured the harrowing trek through the Glacier wilderness right alongside Sam, Willow, and the teens.

Sam is every bit the swoony hero even if a bit dumb for not seeing what — or should I say who? — was right under his nose all along. Despite having very little in common with Willow, I could root for her and loved the way she cared for and interacted with the youth.

The hospital scene toward the beginning seemed a bit unrealistic and farfetched. I can’t give away details because … you just have to read it. But it makes one protagonist appear stupid and the other act out of character given claims that follow later. The novel also ends with a few too many pairings to be believable, as though the author tied everything up with a neat little bow. Still, Rescue Me is one of the most enjoyable Warren novels I’ve read in recent years. I haven’t devoured one of her stories so quickly since Take a Chance on Me.

New developments occur in the hunt for Ian’s missing niece. While this book could technically stand alone, Ian and Sierra’s story and their search for his niece does arc throughout all we’ve seen in the series to date, so I would advise starting with the prequel novella (which is free!) and book one. I recommend the Montana Rescue series to romance and Warren fans alike.

Review copy provided by publisher via NetGalley. Thanks!

**Originally posted on Fiction Addict.

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Character Spotlight + Giveaway: Sarah Monzon’s Henry and Alice

Yesterday, we had an exciting day with Michael and Jack stopping by and learning about Sarah Monzon’s latest release, All of You. (Read all about it here.) Today, Henry and Alice have traveled all the way from 1944 ( 😉 ) to tell us a bit about themselves.

Meet Henry

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: Dan Stevens

Physical description: Slightly curly blond hair and sky-blue eyes. He’s average height, but his ever-present fedora adds a few inches. The tell-tale ink stains on his fingers only slightly distract from the smart way he dresses.

Age: 24

Loves: Is observing a hobby? Whether it’s through the lens of his camera or just from a park bench, there is a lot one can learn…about people and events. He also has an affinity for sweeping Alice off her feet.

Hates: Haggis. Seriously. Why would the Scottish think cooking a lamb’s heart, lungs, and liver into a pudding and encasing it in the sheep’s stomach would be appetizing?

Biggest struggle: Balancing everything. Especially now that a certain lady has intrigued him.

Background: He’s the oldest child of a well-known family and as such has a lot of responsibilities and expectations to live up to. He tends to keep his family connections on the down low.

Work: He’s most well-known for his articles and photographs that are printed on the front pages of the newspaper. His other job? Well, he prefers not to talk about that one. Secrecy is key, you know.

Meet Alice

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: A young Carole Landis

Physical description: Soft blonde hair that is often styled in finger waves or victory curls. She’s taller than most women and used to standing at eye-level with men. Slender, but not delicate.

Age: 21

Loves: A bit rebellious, she loves anything that her father would frown upon. That includes climbing trees, racing her horse across a Tennessee meadow, and doing her part in the war effort.

Hates: That bombings and U-boats and the rising death toll is the new norm for all the citizens of the world.

Biggest struggle: Knowing who she is now that she’s escaped her father’s restrictions. But, maybe even more than that, coming to terms that their relationship will never be what she wishes…and that his calling her a disappointment doesn’t define her.

Background: Trying to stay within the confines of her father’s expectations was stifling growing up. Smile just so, wear that, befriend those people. She dreamed of wings to fly free of her elegant cage and found them behind the controls of Jimmie’s bi-plane.

Work: A pilot with the Air Transport Auxiliary in England. She ferries all types of airplanes from factories to Royal Air Force pilots at the front lines.

Giveaway:

Click on the image or Rafflecopter link to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclaimer: I will be traveling this week, so I will announce the winner next week.)

Explore the world of All of You:

About the Author:

Sarah Monzon is a Navy chaplain’s wife and a stay at home mom to the two cutest littles in the world. Playing pretend all day with them isn’t enough, she spends the evenings after their heads hit the pillow to create her own imaginary characters. When she isn’t in the world of make believe, she can be found in the pine forests of western Washington taking care of her family, fostering friendships, and enjoying all the adventures each day brings.

Her debut novel, The Isaac Project, skyrocketed to Amazon bestseller status while her Sophomore book, Finders Keepers, has finaled in contests such as the Inspy Awards and received a 4 star review from Romantic Times.

Connect with Sarah through her website, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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Character Spotlight + Giveaway: Sarah Monzon’s Michael and Jack

About the Story:

Maryland, Present Day

Jacquelyn Rogers can rebuild anything…except the shambles of her past. A restorer of vintage planes, she’s worked hard to earn the reputation of being one of the guys. The last thing she needs is a former Navy pilot fighting his own inner demons stepping in to defend her from dangers she thought she’d outrun long ago. Some battles must be fought alone.

After a freak accident severs Lieutenant Michael “Finch” Carrington’s dreams, as well as two limbs, he’s left with nothing but a fragile faith and a duty-bound promise to watch out for his friend’s baby sister. A promise she insists is as unnecessary as it is unappreciated. But when she turns the tables and begins to weld together the broken parts of his life, it may be his heart that is in need of protection.

England, 1944

With the world at war yet again, Alice Galloway rejects her father’s traditional expectations and offers her piloting expertise to the Air Transport Auxiliary. She may be a woman in a man’s world, but when she overhears key intelligence, she must find the strength to transcend boundaries and her own fears. Or countless people may die.

Sometimes the past reaches forward to bring hope to the future.

Meet Michael Carrington

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: Chris O’Donnell

Physical description: Dark brown hair cut military length. Ocean-blue eyes. Clean-shaven. Muscles well-toned from a regimented Navy workout schedule. Amputated right arm and leg.

Age: 28

Loves: The Navy and flying is his life. Or was. He’s still getting used to his new normal.

Hates: Being called a hero.

Biggest struggle: Accepting what his life looks like now. Being okay with not knowing what the future holds.                                      

Background: He comes from a strong Christian family and used to win prizes at memorizing scripture. He’s really close to his family and has two older brothers and a younger sister.

Work: He’s in between jobs. After the freak accident that left him an amputee, learning how to walk again with a prosthetic and looking after his best friend’s sister pretty much takes up all his time. Doubt Jackie would like to be called work though. 😉

Meet Jacquelyn (Jack) Rogers

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: Emma Watson

Physical description: Petite with long brunette hair that is usually pulled back in a ponytail and hazel eyes that look almost golden. She can usually be found in mechanic coveralls with grease under her fingernails.

Age: 26

Loves: Everything vintage, be it airplanes or cars. And if she can get a look at the engine, even better. Follow that up with a large pizza and a game of air hockey and it would be a gold star day.

Hates: Abusive and controlling men. Feeling out of control. Being looked down upon because of her size and gender.

Biggest struggle: Trusting herself.

Background: Her mother died when she was very young and was raised by her single dad and two older brothers. Maybe that’s why she’s always been “one of the guys,” and more at home with a blow torch than a tube of lipstick.

Work: She restores vintage aircraft. Both engine and body work. She’d love to work with real war planes for museums.

Giveaway:

Click on the image or Rafflecopter link to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

(Disclaimer: I will be traveling this week, so I will announce the winner next week.)

All of You is a dual timeline story. Come back tomorrow to meet Henry and Alice the 1944 characters, and to explore the world behind this novel.

About the Author:

Sarah Monzon is a Navy chaplain’s wife and a stay at home mom to the two cutest littles in the world. Playing pretend all day with them isn’t enough, she spends the evenings after their heads hit the pillow to create her own imaginary characters. When she isn’t in the world of make believe, she can be found in the pine forests of western Washington taking care of her family, fostering friendships, and enjoying all the adventures each day brings.

Her debut novel, The Isaac Project, skyrocketed to Amazon bestseller status while her Sophomore book, Finders Keepers, has finaled in contests such as the Inspy Awards and received a 4 star review from Romantic Times.

Connect with Sarah through her website, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.

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Character Spotlight + Giveaway: Patricia Beal’s Ana, Peter, and Claus

About the story:

Ana Brassfield has her path to the stage of the Metropolitan Opera House all figured out until her first love, renowned German dancer Claus Gert, returns to Georgia to win her back. Despite a promising start towards her ballet career and pending marriage to landscape architect, Peter Engberg, Ana wonders if her dreams of dancing at the Met are as impossible as her previous romantic relationship with Claus.

Then, an on-stage kiss between Ana and Claus changes everything.

Convinced the kiss is more than a one-time mistake, Peter breaks off their engagement. With an old dog crippled by arthritis and dreams deferred but not left behind, Ana moves to Germany to be with Claus. But the ghost of his late wife, Ana’s own feelings for Peter, and the pressure of earning a spot in a large ballet company are a high price for a shot at success. Ana seems on the verge of having everything she ever dreamed of, but will it be enough?

Meet Ana

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: You – I would love for each reader to feel like the star of the story.

Age: Late twenties.

Loves: Ballet, her aging dog, the Chattahoochee River, Callaway Gardens, the Rhine.

Quirk: Counting when she doesn’t want to cry (trees, bricks, anything).

Favorite place to explore/visit: Callaway Gardens.

Biggest struggle: Finding joy, balance, and success.

Background: She’s been dancing forever and does well, but not as well as she’d hoped, and time is running out. She’s engaged and is happy, but her first love’s return to Georgia after a mysterious disappearance shakes her up.

Work: Second best at the Allen Ballet.

Meet Peter

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: Blake Shelton.

Age: Late thirties.

Loves: Ana, his ranch, and country music.

Quirk: He knows a lot about ducks and hawks.

Favorite place to explore/visit: Anywhere Ana is.

Biggest struggle: Trust.

Background: His first wife left him for another man. He believes that with Ana he can be happy again.

Work: Landscape artist at Callaway Gardens.

Meet Claus

Image Credit: Pinterest

Resembles: Mikhail Baryshnikov.

Age: Late twenties.

Loves: Ana, ballet, picnics by the Rhine, and his Mercedes.

Quirk: He’s an old soul.

Favorite place to explore/visit: Anywhere in his native Germany.

Biggest struggle: To get Ana back.

Background: Claus was born in Germany and met Ana when they were both starting their careers. After a mysterious disappearance and 10-year absence, he returns to Georgia to dance with her and win her back.

Work: He’s now one of the world’s most famous dancers.

Explore the world of A Season to Dance:

Giveaway:

Click on the image or Rafflecopter link to enter.


a Rafflecopter giveaway

About the Author:

Patricia Beal is from Brazil and immigrated to the U.S. in 1992. She fell in love with the English language while washing dishes at McDonald’s and soon passed the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). She put herself through college working at a BP gas station and graduated magna cum laude from the University of Cincinnati in 1998 with a B.A. in English Literature.

Patricia writes contemporary Christian fiction and is represented by Les Stobbe. Her debut novel, A Season to Dance, just came out May 9 (Bling! / Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas). She’s a 2015 Genesis semi-finalist and First Impressions finalist. She and her husband live in El Paso, Texas, with their two children.

You can connect with Patricia on her website, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and Goodreads.

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