Mail-Order Mishaps

I just returned from vacation yesterday. I haven’t been very active on social media, and that was a good thing for my heart and soul. But, now I’m ready to get back at it for the Christian Fiction world. I thoroughly enjoy reading, reviewing, and promoting the books I love. And the authors who work so hard to bring good, clean, Christian fiction into our lives. The population before us did not have the same privilege. Christian fiction is a somewhat “new” genre of books. I’m glad I’m here to enjoy it! How about you?

I just finished a fun and heartfelt book titled “Mail-Order Mishaps” from Barbour Books. It’s a book filled with four novellas by four different authors. Those authors are: Susan Page Davis, Linda Ford, Vickie McDonough, and Erica Vetsch. I was familiar with all of these ladies before this book and had enjoyed stories by each of them. For me, it was a no brainer to choose this compilation. I cannot read enough mail-order bride stories. These were spot on! I hope y’all will enjoy my review of this treasure below.

Review

I’m a sucker for a good mail order bride story. For me, they never get old as long as they are well written. Mail Order Mishaps is definitely well written! There are four stories in this book and each one held an aspect that I fell in love with. I did NOT feel as if I was reading the same story over and over. All four of these storytellers bring something fun and interesting to the table. The historic details were characters within themselves. Give this fun book a read and add it to your keeper shelf!

We had a fun e-book giveaway from author Davalynn Spencer last week for anyone who left a comment. That winner is Julie Baldridge! Congratulations, Julie! Thank you, Ms. Davalynn for the e-book!

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Be sure to come back next week for something very unique. Do you want a hint? It involves my vacation and……books! I’m looking forward to it and I hope you are too!

Blessings Y’all,

Mandy

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Author Interview: Davalynn Spencer

Ms. Davalynn Spencer is an author I “discovered” when I read a post about one of her books on a Facebook page where authors and readers connect. She was asking if anyone would like to read and review her first book in the Front Range Brides series, An Improper Proposal. I agreed, and I was instantly in love with her writing! Currently this book has been reviewed 103 times and has a 4 1/2 star rating on Amazon. I call that a success! As I fell in love with ALL of Ms. Davalynn’s books, I fell in love with her as a person. She is sweet and thoughtful and giving. She has also done the impossible…she talked me into reading a contemporary book, and I truly enjoyed it! Lol! You may not know what a huge deal that is so you’ll just have to trust me on that. 😉 I normally read historical or Amish stories, but because of Ms. Davalynn I have branched out a bit. The book she persuaded me to read is The Miracle Tree. Yep, it was swoon-worthy! If you haven’t read a book by this awesome author you must give her a read! You’ll be happy you did!

Ms. Davalynn has graciously offered to giveaway one of her e-books to one blessed reader who leaves a comment on this post! So comment away and good luck!

The winner from last week’s post is Dusty Charles! Congratulations!

Here goes the interview!

TRD:If you could read only one fiction book for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Ms. Davalynn: Ooh, that’s a tough question because I love fiction and the power of story. But if I had to choose today, my answer would be Joanne Bischof’s The Lady and the Lionheart. Something about that book grabbed a piece of my heart and wouldn’t let go – and I read it two years ago!

TRD: What is your least favorite part of getting a book from research to sitting on a shelf?

Ms. Davalynn: My least-favorite part of the writing process is that last step prior to the shelf: climbing the marketing and promotions ladder so I can reach the shelf and slide my book into position.

TRD: What is your favorite part of the same process?

Ms. Davalynn: Favorite part? Ah, yes, the story. The discovery as I write, watching the tale unfold like a movie on the screen. Getting to know my characters and being surprised by them. After all, it’s really not my story. It’s theirs.

TRD: Most of your books are set in the 19th century. If you could choose anything from one of your character’s closet, shoebox, or jewelry box, what would it be?

Ms. Davalynn: Great question, Mandy. If I could choose a keepsake from one of my characters, it would be Betsy Parker’s journal that she keeps hidden in a secret compartment of her steamer trunk. Oh, the secrets it holds! (An Unexpected Redemption)

TRD: What can we expect from you in the upcoming year in the Christian fiction world? I know your fans want to know, including me.

Ms. Davalynn: My contribution to this year’s Thanksgiving Books & Blessings collection, Mail-Order Misfire, releases September 3. I love this story about an adorable little girl who writes for a mail-order “helper” for her daddy. Such childlike faith and love and promise. Trouble is, she doesn’t tell her daddy the lady is coming until it’s too late. But what could go wrong?

And in November, I have a delightful Colorado Christmas novella for the holiday season. More on that later!

Thank you, Ms. Davalynn! Everyone give her a round of applause! I’m looking forward to her new novella, how about you?

Don’t forget to enter the contest to win one of Davalynn Spencer’s e-books! Simply leave a comment by signing up on http://www.wordpress.com with your email address and a password. Then come back to http://www.thereadingdaisy.home.blog and leave a comment on this post. It’s easy! The winner will be announced here on the blog next week on the new post.

Some of Davalynn Spencer’s Books…

The Canon Street Chronicles

Book 1 Loving The Horseman

Book 2 Straight To My Heart

Book 3 Romancing The Widow

The Front Range Series

Book 1 An Improper Proposal

Book 2 An Unexpected Redemption

Mail-Order Misfire novella, and prequel to The Front Range series.

The Miracle Tree (contemporary/standalone)

The Snowbound Bride (novella)

Snow Angel (novella)

Blessings Y’all,

Mandy

Author Interview: Wanda Brunstetter

My First Christian Fiction Book

Approximately 15 years ago I was reading secular books. The stories were not very good, to be honest, and it seemed every book I chose was farther away from God than the last one. I loved to read, as I do now, but couldn’t find any books that suited my way of life. One day I was talking to my aunt. She asked if I had been reading. I explained my dilemma. She asked, “Have you read any of the Amish books?”. I said no and she gave me some names of authors. I went straight to a bookstore and bought The Storekeeper’s Daughter by Wanda Brunstetter. Ahhhhhh! My very first Christian fiction book! It was like someone was singing the Hallelujah Chorus. I was caught…hook, line, and sinker. My life changed that day, and I will always be thankful for that.

I’m doing a giveaway today! I’m giving away one copy of Wanda’s latest release. Details about the giveaway will be at the end of the interview.

Wanda, thank you so much for being my guest today on The Reading Daisy. You are the best, and I am grateful. Let’s get started!

TRD: If you could read only one fiction book for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Ms. Wanda: It would probably be one of Janette Oke’s wonderful historical novels. She is one of the authors whose books inspired me to write fiction.

TRD: What is your least favorite part of getting a book from research to sitting on a shelf?

Ms. Wanda: There isn’t much about writing that I dislike, but I suppose my least favorite part might be spending the time needed to outline each chapter before I begin writing the book. However, there’s a good side to this, too, and that is: outlining chapters ahead can help stave off writer’s block because I always have something to work with in the outline. Although I do try to outline ahead, sometimes my characters have minds of their own, and they can veer off in another direction than I’d originally planned for them.

TRD: What is your favorite part of that same process?

Ms. Wanda: My favorite part of the writing process is spending time with my Amish friends, which is the best kind of research possible. I want my stories to accurately portray their way of life, and that comes about by spending time with them.

TRD: Most of your books are written about the Amish. If you decided to live as part of an Amish community which aspect of their lives would be the most difficult to live with?

Ms. Wanda: The most difficult part would be learning the Pennsylvania Dutch language and being able to speak it fluently. I know a few words, but not enough to feel comfortable carrying on a conversation with the Amish in their native language.

TRD: What can we expect from you in the upcoming year in the Cristian fiction world? I know your fans want to know, including me. 🙂

Ms. Wanda: I have several new books coming out in the next year. The next one in line is The Healing Jar, which is Book 3 in my Prayer Jars series. It releases in August of this year. I also am taking part in a compilation of 18 fiction stories, based on everyday life in Amish communities. That book comes out in November 2019. In addition to my 10 stories, Jean and Richelle each wrote 4 stories in the collection. In March 2020, I have a new series beginning, which is actually a spin-off from my Prayer Jars series, only this series has a bit of a mystery to it.

It’s time for a giveaway! I have a copy of The Brides Of The Big Valley to give away to one blessed reader. All you have to do is leave a comment on this post! To leave a comment you must sign up on http://www.wordpress.com. Directions for what to do once you get there are below. Then come back to my page and leave a comment.

Good luck everyone! The winner will be announced next Friday on the blog.

There are three stories in this book about a very unique Amish community. The three stories are written by Wanda Brunstetter, her daughter in law Jean, and Wanda’s granddaughter Rachelle. I truly enjoyed all three stories and I gave the book a five star review!

Blessings Y’all,

Mandy

Author Interview: Christy Award Winning, Laura Frantz

“Lael lass, if I kiss you…just once…I fear I canna stop.” -Ian Justus

The Frontiersman’s Daughter

Ten years ago I found myself wanting more in my reading life. It seemed as though I was reading the same stories over and over, although I wasn’t. I’m a Kentuckian, and I love reading about my home state. I especially enjoy Kentucky history. I went to Amazon and typed in the search bar, “Christian Kentucky historical fiction”. The first book I saw was “The Frontiersman’s Daughter” by Laura Frantz. I rarely spend full price on books, especially by an author I’ve never heard of. But, this book’s description was so amazing I just had to take a chance on it. I ordered the book. Oh, how glad I am that I did! It started a fire in my heart for Laura Frantz books. The Frontiersman’s Daughter was Laura’s first novel. We are now anticipating her 11th novel in January 2020, An Uncommon Woman. The Cover for that book will be revealed at the end of this interview for those of you who haven’t seen it. Now, on with the interview!

TRD: If you could read only one fiction book for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Ms. Laura: Probably Christy by Catherine Marshall, a whole world into itself and so true of my Appalachia. It revolutionized the Christian publishing industry and I’m so grateful. There is even a Christy Award now devoted to the author and story. Julie, the sequel, is also excellent though lesser known.

TRD: You know that Christy award she is talking about? Ms. Laura actually won that award for her 2018 novel, The Lacemaker! Congratulations!

TRD: What is your least favorite part of getting a book from research to sitting on a shelf?

Ms. Laura: Probably the page proofs which is the last time I see the book before it goes to print. My imagination is still in overdrive and I spy all sorts of things I wish I could have expanded upon, changed, or even deleted! It’s a very hard read for me personally, probably because I’m a perfectionist. At this stage, you can only make the barest, most essential changes. What readers don’t realize is that if you make too many changes at this stage you pay for them. Thankfully by the page proof stage the book is pretty much the one you’ll soon see in print and on the shelf. I remind myself as I see the flaws in my own work that there is only one perfect book, the Bible.

TRD: What is your favorite part of that same process?

Ms. Laura: I am so smitten with the first draft. I liken it to falling in love, getting to know your characters both good and bad, settling in for that roller coaster ride of not knowing where they’ll take you as I don’t map anything out. Truly seat-of-the-pants writing. 🙂 On the flip side, the first draft is really rough and truly terrible. Many inconsistencies, and rabbit trails and typos. Just a huge gush of imagination that needs a whole lot of cleaning up!

TRD: Most of your books are set in the 18th century. If you could choose anything from one of your character’s closet, shoebox, or jewelry box, what would it be?

Ms. Laura: Oh, what a wonderful question! I would definitely covet or borrow that beautiful blue gown in Lady Elisabeth’s wardrobe which is on the cover of The Lacemaker. It’s an actual 18th-century gown in a museum collection. And such a heavenly blue. ‘Celestial blue’ is another name for it back then. Of course, I would require extra-tight stays! This KY girl likes her cornbread…

TRD: What can we expect from you in the upcoming year in the Christian fiction world? I know your fans want to know, including me. 🙂

Ms. Laura: I’m currently working on and almost finished with a novel set in Jamestown or James Towne as it was called then in Virginia. I step back a century to 1634. That’s next after An Uncommon Woman releasing January 2020. Then it’s another frontier novel. But no spoilers for you!

TRD: I sincerely want to thank Laura Frantz for taking time out of her truly busy schedule to do this interview. Now, here’s the peek at that gorgeous cover I promised all you Laura fans!

Blessings Y’all,

Mandy

Author Interview: Amber Lynn Perry

I am very excited to introduce our guest author this week…Mrs. Amber Lynn Perry! What an honor that Ms. Amber was gracious enough to do an interview for The Reading Daisy. Not only does she lead a busy life of writing, editing, promoting, and being a wife and homeschooling mom she is also due to have a brand new baby girl just any time. I think we should call her Super Woman from now on! Ms. Amber makes her home in Washington State.

Let’s begin the interview.

TRD: If you could read only one fiction book for the rest of your life, what would it be?

Ms. Amber: Such a great question! And I’m glad you specified “fiction” because that makes the process of deciding a tad easier, lol! I love nonfiction books so much as well. I would have to say my go-to fiction book–the book I could read over and over again is Captain From Castile. Written in the 1940’s, this epic historical romance has everything I ever want in a story.

TRD: Your books are set in the 18th Century, around the Revolutionary War. If you could choose anything from one of your character’s closet, shoe box, or jewelry box, what would it be?

Ms. Amber: Oh my goodness! How can I choose?! Well, if I were going to pick anything that I might wear on a regular basis–I might pick either the hats or the shoes. They are so beautiful and remarkably comfortable, not to mention versatile. They can be dressed up or down which is always a bonus ;). Plus, they just add that perfect statement to any outfit.

TRD: What is your least favorite part of getting a book from research to sitting on a shelf?

Ms. Amber: There are a lot of difficult/painful things about any art/craft, but I believe that editing is my least favorite. It can be long and tedious, and sometimes I know there’s a problem or hole in the story, but I don’t know how to fix it! I will admit I have shed many a tear through the editing process, but it’s so worth it. Editing is a necessary part of the art of writing and I’m learning to deal with it better the more I write. LOL!

TRD: What is your favorite part of that same process?

Ms. Amber: I absolutely LOVE bringing the characters to life. It is always such a thrilling experience to have what lives in my head finally be put into words. I have had stories living in my heart and mind for years and seeing them finally have their own full story out in the world for others to enjoy is positively wonderful.

I want to thank Ms. Amber for being with us today. I am one of her biggest fans! She brings her characters to life in an amazing way. I always say I fall into her books and don’t want to climb back out even when I reach the end. If you are a fan of historical fiction you MUST add Amber Lynn Perry’s books to your to be read list/pile. When I was listing all of this author’s titles I forgot to mention that she not only writes to-die-for books, she is also the model on each of her book’s covers! Yep, she is definitely a Super Woman!

Besides many others, Amber Lynn Perry has released a novel and novella into the Christian fiction world in the last seven months! Check them out! They both received five star reviews from me and many more reviewers. Her books are listed below in order, as they are all part of The Daughters of His Kingdom series.

1) So Fair A Lady

2) So True A Love

3) So Rare A Gift

4) So Pure A Heart

Novella: If Not For Thee

5) So Bright A Hope

Novella: Upon My Heart Forever

Blessings Y’all!

Mandy

The Noble Guardian

I just finished The Noble Guardian by Michelle Griep today. I feel way behind the rest of “the Noble Guardian crowd”, and I am, due to family sickness and family celebrations. And those do not go hand in hand, by the way. Smile! I have my review up on Goodreads, Amazon, CBD, and bookbub. I will also share it here.

Here is the description, taken from the back cover of the book:

A Cross-Country Trip through Regency England Brings Intrigue, Rogues, and High Adventure

The must-read conclusion to Michelle Griep’s Bow Street Runners Trilogy: Life couldn’t be better for Abigail Gilbert—but it’s been a long time coming. Having lived with a family who hated her, love is finally within reach. Abby sets off on a journey across England to marry one of the most prestigious gentleman bachelors in the land—until highwaymen upset her plans and threaten her life.

Horse patrol captain Samuel Thatcher arrives just in time to save Abby. But to him she’s simply another victim in a job he’s come to despise. Tired of the dark side of humanity, he intends to buy land and retire.

Abby pleads with him to escort her on the rest of her journey. He refuses until she offers him the thing he desperately needs to achieve his goal: money. Delivering her safely will earn him more than enough to settle into a quiet life.

So begins an impossible trek for the cynical lawman and the proper lady. Each will be indelibly changed by the time they reach her betrothed, if they don’t kill one another first—or fall in love.

Spoiler Alert! I loved it! I must say I have not enjoyed a Michelle Griep book to that extent since The Captive Heart. Here’s my review.

The Noble Guardian is another well written, thought provoking, timeless tale from author Michelle Griep. This story was intriguing, exciting, romantic, and full of God’s love and protection. I would definitely recommend this book to my friends!

Until next time!

Blessings Y’all,

Mandy

A Blog…..Really?

Happy Tuesday everyone!

I am beginning to learn that it is the sweet, simple things of life which are the real ones after all. -Laura Ingalls Wilder

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A blog…really? The title of this post is very fitting if you know me personally. I’m not someone who puts herself “out there”. However, there are times in my life when God has other plans. This is one of those times. I’m excited to begin a new journey in the cyber world, but I must admit I am nervous as well. Let me introduce myself. I am Mandy Bentley and I hale from the eastern side of Kentucky, the Bluegrass State. I am an avid reader of Christian fiction. The Lord gave me a love of reading early on in my life. I loved all the Little Golden Books, The Poky Little Puppy especially. But it wasn’t until I read the Little House On The Prairie books that I truly fell in love with reading. It was while reading that series that I learned I could completely lose myself in a well written story. I’ve been getting lost ever since.

Since this is a blog about Christian Fiction, let’s get started! I wanted to list my favorite books, but that would be much too difficult. Let’s begin with some of my favorite authors. Here they are…Laura Frantz, Amber Lynn Perry, Karen Witemeyer, Tamera Alexander, Melissa Jagears, Joanne Bischof, Jan Watson, Lori Wick, Wanda Brunstetter, Beverly Lewis, Suzanne Woods Fisher, and Davalynn Spencer. If you know anything about these authors you will notice most of them write in the historical genre and a few are writers of Amish stories. I don’t branch out frequently, so I’m hoping maybe this blog will bring about a time of growth in me in more ways than one.

In the next couple of weeks you can look forward to interviews from Laura Frantz and Amber Lynn Perry. I am truly grateful to these two ladies. They are busy gals with deadlines, galleys, and for Amber, a pregnancy! Among all of these super important things they still agreed to be my guests. What a blessing to me! I hope y’all will leave the names of your favorite authors in the comments below, and maybe some things you would like to see included in this blog. I will take all the suggestions I can get!

Blessings To Y’all!

Mandy

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