Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Thunder by Bonnie S. Calhoun (Blog Tour)

by Bonne S. Calhoun
Stone Braide Chronicles series, Book 1

About the Book
In post-apocalyptic America, Selah Chavez is crouched in long grass on a shore littered with the rusted metal remnants of a once-great city. It is the day before her eighteenth Born Remembrance, and she is hunting, though many people refuse to eat animal flesh, tainted by radiation during the Time of Sorrows. What Selah's really after are Landers, mysterious people from a land across the big water who survive the delirium-inducing passage in small boats that occasionally crash against the shoreline. She knows she should leave the capture to the men, but Landers bring a good price from the Company and are especially prized if they keep the markings they arrive with.

Everything falls to pieces when the Lander Selah catches is stolen by her brothers--and Selah wakes up the next morning to find the Lander's distinctive mark has suddenly appeared on her own flesh. Once the hunter, Selah is now one of the hunted, and she knows only one person who can help her--Bohdi Locke, the Lander her brothers hope to sell.

With evocative descriptions of a strange new world that combines elements of scientific advances, political intrigue, and wilderness survival, Bonnie S. Calhoun weaves a captivating tale of a world more like our own than we may want to admit.

Buy a copy  |  Read an excerpt  |  Find out what others think

About the Author
Bonnie S. Calhoun is Owner/Director of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance, owner/publisher of Christian Fiction Online Magazine, Northeast Zone Director for American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), and the ACFW ‘2011 Mentor of the Year.”

She loves to write, but it doesn't make her happy unless there are the three B's...body count, blood, and blowing things up. She also has mad skills at coding HTML, and website design. And she lives in a log cabin in the woods with fifteen acres and a pond full of bass, though she'd rather buy fish at the grocery store. Bonnie shares her domain with a husband, a dog, and two cats, all of whom think she’s waitstaff!

Bonnie S. Calhoun Online

The Prequel
My copy of Thunder just arrived on Monday, so I haven't had a chance to read it yet. However, I did read the prequel short story, Tremors, last month and thought it was fantastic! You can download it for free (here) if you want to get a little background info on the series before you dive in. As for my thoughts on Tremors, here's a short review ...
Tremors is a short prequel to the forthcoming Stone Braide Chronicles. I enjoyed getting a sneak peek into this series and meeting some of the characters who I'm sure I'll be reading more about in the rest of the series. Selah is going to be a great main character. She's bold and a little angsty, which is always a fun combination. Selah's parents and brothers were interesting as well. I was also surprised (pleasantly!) at how much action was incorporated in these 28 pages——an arranged marriage, a murder, and some serious subterfuge.

I think it's important to note that this is a prequel and pretty much leaves readers hanging. I assume that Thunders (the first book in the series) will pick up where Tremors leaves off. I'm extremely curious to see how this series will play out. Great beginning! [4 stars]

Friday, October 10, 2014

The Sea House by Elisabeth Gifford (Blog Tour + Review)

The Sea House
by Elisabeth Gifford
Available April 2014
St. Martin's Press
320 pages

About the Book
Scotland, 1860.

Reverend Alexander Ferguson, naive and newly-ordained, takes up his new parish, a poor, isolated patch on the Hebridean island of Harris. His time on the island will irrevocably change the course of his life, but the white house on the edge of the dunes keeps its silence long after Alexander departs. It will be more than a century before the Sea House reluctantly gives up its secrets. Ruth and Michael buy the grand but dilapidated building and begin to turn it into a home for the family they hope to have. Their dreams are marred by a shocking discovery. The tiny bones of a baby are buried beneath the house; the child’s fragile legs are fused together – a mermaid child. Who buried the bones? And why? Ruth needs to solve the mystery of her new home – but the answers to her questions may lie in her own past.

Based on a real nineteenth-century letter to The Times in which a Scottish clergyman claimed to have seen a mermaid, The Sea House is an epic, sweeping tale of loss and love, hope and redemption, and how we heal ourselves with the stories we tell.

My Thoughts
The Sea House is a unique book ... making it a bit difficult for me to wrap my brain around and giving words to my thoughts. (It's not often I say that!)

The story is intriguing. The setting is beautiful! (Anyone want to visit Scotland with me now?!) The writing is lovely. The author has mastered a lyrical style that adds another layer to the story.

Books that go back and forth across two time periods are often to perfect. Personally, I felt that the historical storyline was better written, but I enjoyed the contemporary story as well.

Overall, I thought this was an intriguing book, and I'm interested to see what the author will deliver next.  [3.5 stars]

Please note: While this book has a redemptive storyline, it was written for the general market.

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher through Litfuse Publicity in exchange for my fair and honest review.

About the Author
Elisabeth Gifford grew up in a vicarage in the industrial Midlands. She studied French literature and world religions at Leeds University. She is the author of “The House of Hope: A Story of God’s Love and Provision for the Abandoned Orphans of China” and has written articles for The Times and the Independent and has a Diploma in Creative Writing from Oxford OUDCE and an MA in Creative Writing from Royal Holloway College. She is married with three children. They live in Kingston on Thames but spend as much time as possible in the Hebrides.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Character Meet & Greet w/ Clayton Fincannon from The Mason Jar by James Russell Lingerfelt

I'm pleased to welcome Clayton Fincannon to i blog 4 books. Clayton is the protagonist in a new book, The Mason Jar, by James Russell Lingerfelt.

i blog 4 books: What is the most interesting thing about you?

Clayton Fincannon: My parents and brother died when I was young, so my grandpa raised me on a Tennessee horse farm. For graduate school I studied at a private university on the west coast and served in humanitarian work abroad.

ib4b: What is your occupation?

CF: Full time writer, but an amateur. I’m also an amateur rancher. People ask me to come and speak to large groups about the future of humanitarian work. All that keeps me going fulltime, and I make a living at it all along the way.

ib4b: What three words would you use to describe yourself?

CF: Passionate, lover of nature, lover of books

ib4b: What do you do for fun?

CF: Read, write, and drink lots of coffee. I pretend I’m a great horse rancher when I’m home so that the old men in town don’t give me a hard time.

ib4b: Share a favorite childhood memory.

CF: Playing with my parents and brother when they were still alive. Dad coached our basketball team, my mom loved to cuddle with me, and my brother and I use to play in the waterfall, creek, and woods behind my grandpa’s house. My parents and brother were killed in an automobile accident when I was 12.

ib4b: What is your life motto or goal?

CF: Surround myself with my loved ones and pursue what I’m passionate about. That keeps me going in a world where so many of us want to quit.

ib4b: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

CF: I wish I could be more like my friends, sometimes. A few of them are fantastic lawyers, doctors, and engineers. I know I could do that with an education in that field, but if I’m not free to create literature and be outside with the farm, I’d go crazy.

ib4b: What is your favorite food?

CF: Grilled salmon or seared tuna. Being a horse rancher from Tennessee, you’d think I’d like steak, and I do, but I try to take it easy on red meat. I’ve eaten way too much of it in my past.

ib4b: What is the most important thing to you?

CF: My loved ones and the freedom to read and write and try to make a living at it. That’s why I left everything to become a full time writer and farmer. It’s all I wanted to do.

ib4b: What's your biggest pet peeve?

CF: When people I depend on are indecisive and unpredictable.

About the Book
What if your old college roommate called, raving about a book someone sent her, calling it the most beautiful book she’s ever read? “But,” she said, “it’s about you.” The author is your college ex.

In The Mason Jar, Clayton Fincannon is a Tennessee farm boy raised at the feet of his grandfather. He and his grandfather leave letters for each other in a Mason jar on his grandfather’s desk—letters of counsel and affirmation. When Clayton attends college in Southern California, he meets and falls in love with a dark debutante from Colorado. However, when an unmentioned past resurrects in her life and she leaves, Clayton is left with unanswered questions.

Clayton goes on to serve as a missionary in Africa, while he and his grandfather continue their tradition of writing letters. When Clayton returns home five years later to bury his grandfather, he searches for answers pertaining to the loss of the young woman he once loved. Little does Clayton know, the answers await him in the broken Mason jar.

A story about a girl who vanished, a former love who wrote a book about her, and a reunion they never imagined.

James Russell Lingerfelt's debut novel, The Mason Jar, is hot-off-the-press and causing quite the buzz. It's even been optioned for a feature film and is in pre-production.

Catch the spark by entering James' Kindle Fire giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire
  • The Mason Jar by James Russell Lingerfelt
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on October 19th. Winner will be announced October 20th at James Russell's blog, Love Story from the Male Perspective

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