Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Beautiful People--June

Hey all! So I have a little bit different of a post going on today. :) I've been seeing all the other posts going up as a part of the June Beautiful People link up, so I decided that I would join in! I mean, why not? It looked like so much fun! (And it is. ;))

This month's questions were about childhood, and I decided to chose a Gilbert Wilson, a  character from A Question of Honor, my WWII WIP. 
Now, before we go any further, I should probably inform you that he is never referred to as Gilbert. Just Gil. ;) The only person who calls him Gilbert is David, and only when he's upset. And since David Sullivan is mentioned quite a bit throughout this post, I should probably tell you that he's Gil's very best friend. They did pretty much everything together, from the time they were kids, all the way up through adulthood. Including leaving the states to join the RAF. 
Gil is one of my very favorite characters in this book. We have a lot in common, and...yeah. He puts up with a lot from me. Thankfully, he's too much of a gentleman to do anything except shake his head and come along for the ride. ;) 

What is their first childhood memory?
Well, other then the farm that he grew up on, his earliest memory is tumbling off the barn roof trying to fly. David never let him live it down. 

What were their best and worst childhood experiences?
Best childhood experience would probably be the first time he was allowed to fly with his dad in the crop duster. Although after that he always thought that crop dusters were horribly slow and much too safe. 
Worst would be the time David's sister, Anne, was thrown from a horse. Because he was an only child, Gil almost grew up at the Sullivan household, and loved all seven of the siblings as his own. The thought that one of them might die scared him to death. 

What’s something that scared them as child?
The thought of being grounded and having to stay away from the Sullivans. Gil was extremely mischievous, and it happened a time or two. Since both Mr. Sullivan and Mr. Wilson owned and worked the same 500 acre plot of land, their families were together a lot. Being separated from them was torture to Gil. 

Who did they look up to most?
Gil looked up to his dad and also Mr. Sullivan. :) 

Favorite and least favorite childhood foods?
His least favorite was corn. Because on the farm, it seemed it was the one thing they always had, even if they were out of everything else. 
His favorite was cold, fresh vanilla ice cream. Which was a rare treat!

If they had their childhood again, would they change anything?
No. Well, perhaps he would have made a more conscious effort to stay out of trouble. Not that it would have helped... ;)

What was their childhood home like?
It was a two-story white house. Directly to the right was the well, clothesline, and red barn. A couple hundred feet down the road was David's house. 

What kind of child were they? Curious? Wild? Quiet? Devious?
Definitely curious! Not devious... mischievous would be a better word. He always had the best plans and ideas in mind, but for some reason they never turned out quite like they were supposed to.  Like he said later, he was the troublesome one, and David was his conscience.

What was their relationship to their parents and siblings like?
Good! While there were times he thought his dad was a bit to strict, Gil always respected and looked up to him. (And he was glad for the "strictness" later on. ;)) And he was always close to his mom. She was always encouraging him to use his curiosity for good, and he loved her for it!

What did they want to be when they grew up, and what did they actually become?
When he was young he dreamed of soaring above the clouds. Getting so high that the blue and sparkling white of the sun was the only thing in front of him, and the clouds all he could see behind. He never had a specific career in mind, he only knew he didn't want to be stuck on the farm. 
And...he ended up flying for the U.S army air corps, and then in Britain with the RAF in the year of 1940. It's safe to say that what he wished for came true. And he loved every minute of it!  Flying to him was like breathing; it was necessary to life. 

Well...those were all the questions! Did Gil sound interesting? (Hopefully? ;)) 
I hope you are having a wonderful week!!!

Friday, June 24, 2016

The Silent Blade blog tour/reviewer sign-up

As you can probably tell from the title, today I'm announcing the blog tour sign up for The Silent Blade!!!
Only four weeks left till the release date! I'm crazy busy and excited and scared at the same time. (This is normal...right?)
Thank you all so much for all your encouragement as I've been working on this book! I can't believe we're this close to the release date!! Y'all are awesome!

(You can read the synopsis for the book here.)

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

RJF~~~Books, books, and more books!

Hi y'all! Okay, so today I'm posting as part of the Recommend June Fest Deborah is holding over on her blog! :)  (You really need to go and check it out if you haven't already!)
I wanted to be able to post more then once, but . . . I haven't had the time to do any post other then the normal Friday one.
Anyway. This week has been a little slower, and I wanted to get a post up today. And, since I cannot just recommend only one book . . . I decided I'd do a few. (Haha, see what I did? There's no limit on the word "few" B-))

~~Historical Fiction~~

A Night Divided-- by Jennifer Nielsen

With the rise of the Berlin Wall, twelve-year-old Gerta finds her family divided overnight. She, her mother, and her brother Fritz live on the eastern side, controlled by the Soviets. Her father and middle brother, who had gone west in search of work, cannot return home. Gerta knows it is dangerous to watch the wall, to think forbidden thoughts of freedom, yet she can't help herself. She sees the East German soldiers with their guns trained on their own citizens; she, her family, her neighbors and friends are prisoners in their own city.

But one day, while on her way to school, Gerta spots her father on a viewing platform on the western side, pantomiming a peculiar dance. Then, when she receives a mysterious drawing, Gerta puts two and two together and concludes that her father wants Gerta and Fritz to tunnel beneath the wall, out of East Berlin. However, if they are caught, the consequences will be deadly. No one can be trusted. Will Gerta and her family find their way to freedom?

Resist--by Emily Ann Putzke

Munich, Germany 1942—Hans Scholl never intended to get his younger sister involved in an underground resistance. When Sophie Scholl finds out, she insists on joining Hans and his close friends in writing and distributing anti-Nazi leaflets entitled, The White Rose. The young university students call out to the German people, begging them to not allow their consciences to become dormant, but to resist their tyrannical leader and corrupt government. Hans knows the consequences for their actions—execution for committing high treason—but firm in his convictions, he’s prepared to lose his life for a righteous cause. Based on a true story, Hans, Sophie and all the members of The White Rose resistance group will forever inspire and challenge us to do what is right in the midst of overwhelming evil.

The Swiss Courier-- by Tricia Goyer

It is August 1944 and the Gestapo is mercilessly rounding up suspected enemies of the Third Reich. When Joseph Engel, a German physicist working on the atomic bomb, finds that he is actually a Jew, adopted by Christian parents, he must flee for his life to neutral Switzerland. Gabi Mueller is a young Swiss-American woman working for the newly formed American Office of Strategic Services (the forerunner to the CIA) close to Nazi Germany. When she is asked to risk her life to safely "courier" Engel out of Germany, the fate of the world rests in her hands. If she can lead him to safety, she can keep the Germans from developing nuclear capabilities. But in a time of traitors and uncertainty, whom can she trust along the way? 

The Eleventh Hour --by Micheal Phillips 

In 1930’s pre-war Prussia, Baron von Dortmann lives an idyllic life with his daughter Sabina. A devoted gardener and father, the Baron teaches his daughter powerful lessons about life, creation, and God’s love during treasured walks in the estate’s beautiful gardens.

But Sabina is growing up, and the Baron’s beloved Prussia is changing. Now a beautiful young woman, Sabina has caught the eye of a handsome young American, Matthew. Meanwhile, a cloud is gathering on the horizon as the Nazis seize power in neighboring Germany. As he strives to protect his family and follow his own moral compass, Baron von Dortmann will face heart-wrenching decisions—with only God’s guidance to light the way

Home Fires of the Great War--by Rebekah Morris

Thirteen-year-old Maria Mitchell, known to all as Ria, and her friend Lydia have been assigned to write a report on a hero or heroine of the Great War (World War I) for a school project. Instead of picking some well known figure, the two friends decide to search for someone forgotten or unknown. When asked to help, Emma Mitchell, Ria's Mom, brings out old letters she and a cousin wrote during the war. The girls are sure the letters hold the key to their success of finding a forgotten hero! But will they? It that all that these letters bring to light? Join Ria and Lydia, Mrs. Mitchell, an old neighbor called Corporal, and others as they re-live the years of home life during the war.

Anchor in the Storm--by Sarah Sundin

(This is probably the only romance book on this list. Please, bear with me, and feel free to scroll past if you wish. ;))

One Plucky Female Pharmacist + One High-Society Naval Officer = Romance--and Danger 
For plucky Lillian Avery, America's entry into World War II means a chance to prove herself as a pharmacist in Boston. The challenges of her new job energize her. But society boy Ensign Archer Vandenberg's attentions only annoy--even if he "is" her brother's best friend. 

During the darkest days of the war, Arch's destroyer hunts German U-boats in vain as the submarines sink dozens of merchant ships along the East Coast. Still shaken by battles at sea, Arch notices his men also struggle with their nerves--and with drowsiness. Could there be a link to the large prescriptions for sedatives Lillian has filled? The two work together to answer that question, but can Arch ever earn Lillian's trust and affection? 

Secret Sabatoge--by Andrew Eddy, Sarah Eddy, and Tori Larson

As the war effort against Hitler ramps up in England, more threats await Winston Churchill and his friends than they know. Even as he declares his readiness to fight, “in France, in the seas, on the oceans,” his ward, Victoria Livingstone, and long time associate, Brendan Bracken, must fight to protect him from a treachery that even he could not have believed. Can they save Churchill from a sabotage so cataclysmic that it has the capacity to alter the course of history?

Okay, well, I'll stop there on the historical fiction. Anyone want to guess what my favorite time period is??? ;) 


Burdney--by Nicole Sager

When a villain's grand scheme takes flight, who will rise up to clip their wings?

Years after an act of betrayal lowers a dark cloud over Burdney, Lady Agatha seeks vengeance and respect, while her sister, Aeryn, chases after freedom and peace. When a young slave named Epic arrives at the Mizgalian castle disguised as a nobleman in need of shelter, the conflicted youth soon finds himself caught in a web of intrigue that reaches further than anyone suspects. 

In a race against time and doom, Blunt the minstrel must travel to Burdney for the vindication of a condemned friend. When his travels take an unexpected turn - and sometimes even go in circles - the Arcrean bard must learn to trust that God is always in control. 

Secrets and deception lie in wait around every corner, until a conspiracy is revealed that will wage a battle for hope and justice on the grounds of Burdney.

Dare--by Tricia Mingerink

Courage could cost him everything. 

Third Blade Leith Torren never questions his orders or his loyalty to King Respen until an arrow wound and a prairie blizzard drive him to the doorstep of the girls whose family he once destroyed.

Their forbidden faith and ties to the Resistance could devastate their family a second time. 

Survival depends on obedience, but freedom beckons. How far does he dare go to resist the king and his Blades?

No matter what Leith chooses, one thing is certain. Someone will die

Annabeth's War--by Jessica Grayson

With King Harold away at war Lord Raburn has his eye on the throne. Those who dare to stand in his way fall beneath his power. All but one. A girl named Annabeth. Can a common, ordinary girl, with love for king, country, and her father, achieve the impossible? 

Trained by her father, a master swordsman, outlawed Annabeth has only her sword, her wits, and her disguises to keep Belterra from falling entirely into Lord Raburn's clutches. Can she rescue her captured father and Prince Alfred? Will one girl keep the kingdom from falling?

Whew! Did you make it through? Congrats if you did! ;) I could have listed so many more, but I tried to keep it as short as I possibly could. And I kept it at an even ten, so I'm good. ;) Have you read any of these? If so, did you enjoy them? Finding all these to list has made me realize it's time for a re-read of several of them. . . :) 
I hope you all are having a wonderful week! Come back on Friday for a special post! *laughs nervously* Yeah, it's a post I'm excited about, but super nervous about, too. ;) 
Have a wonderful rest-of-the-week and an amazing SUMMER!!! :D (Which started Monday. And we've been enjoying immensely. ;))

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Father's Day!

Hey all! I hope you are doing well this Father's Day! It's funny, there's only one day each set aside to celebrate moms/dads, but they are there for us whenever we need them. So, SO thankful for the wonderful parents God gave me! And for my dad. Father's day took on a new meaning when he was diagnosed with cancer a few years back. I'm so thankful that he's still here so we can celebrate today with him. God has been so good to us!
This is my favorite, FAVORITE quote about Dads! :) 
Anyway, I just wanted to take a moment to wish all the dads out there a Happy Fathers Day!!!! You are loved more then you'll ever know. :)
And, to wrap up the post, here's a short poem I wrote last year. (I think!) For father's day.

A daddy is a person, that no one can replace
and if I ever need him, he'll come to me with haste
He is my friend, my loving guide,
And whenever I may need him, he’s right there by my side.
He helps me in the kitchen, I help him work out doors
he helps me with my problems, he’s the person I adore.

My daddy is not perfect, but he tries his very best
to teach us what is good and right, and we are all so blest.
He loves us and protects us, with his tender care
He works hard to provide for us, he’s always just and fair.
If ever there’s a problem I just can’t solve alone,
I run to my daddy, and the love he’s always shown.

Yes, I love my daddy that God has given me on earth,
He loves me and cares for me, and no one else compares.
Yet I have another Daddy, who loves me even more,
And when I have a problem, His loving words are sure.
I’m thankful for Jesus and what he did for me, 
He gave his life so that salvation I would see.

*Both pictures/quotes came from pinterest

Friday, June 17, 2016

Be yourself—a guest post

Hellooo all!! Today I have something a little different for you! Today you get a guest post! I asked my close friend and wonderful editor, Deborah, if she would be willing to "visit" my blog, so to speak. And she said yes, so I'm super excited to have her! (Also, her birthday is tomorrow . . . so can y'all help me wish her a happy birthday, too? ;)) You can visit Deborah at her blog here. Reading in June. Now go follow it. Because I told you to, that's why. ;)
Anyway, without any further ado, here she is!

Two of my favorite things to do will have to be reading and editing books. And since I have y’all’s attention, I’m just goin’ rave about them for a little bit. ;)


You all know that moment when your favorite author releases a new book. You’ve been watching all the updates that they post for a year prior and sending them fan emails.
Well, that moment when they tell you that it’s up on Amazon and you go and order your very first copy of the book. You wait a solid two days for Amazon Prime to do its thing and then…the day it’s supposed to arrive; you don’t get anything done because you’re too busy watching the mailbox.
Oh, but that moment when you touch it for the first time. You hold it and hug it and…you don’t start reading it till the next day because you don’t want to spoil the moment of excitement. But then the next day comes and you read it in a couple hours…and finish it…for the first time…and you won’t ever get to do that again.

Okay, sorry. I didn’t mean for this to be depressing. I just wanted to say that, I feel your pain readers! Sorry, too depressing again. Let’s try a different approach.
You get a new favorite book and you can read it again and again and…still love it! I love that moment when I read a book and love it so much and I have to read it again. It’s so fun!
So I want to encourage you all to keep reading and finding new books. Reading new authors and loving their writing. And for all you writers, there are people out there that love your work, so keep writing! You never know, you could be writing someone new favorite book. ;)


I’m going to get right to the point; when it comes to editing other people writing there is nothing more on this earth that can wow me, so to speak.
It amazes me so much when authors ask me to edit for them. When other people give you their writing to edit, that means that they trust you with their work—their prize possession—enough for you to read it and change it. It’s their work. I’ve done enough writing in my time to know that writing is not something that you can just do. It takes a lot of time, research and emotion. That makes it all the more astonishing that writers will publish their work for the world to read.
Something that I love about editing is: I can change around all those annoying mistakes you find in books before it’s actually published and you’re stuck with the errors for like…forever.
You’ve probably all have read a book that when it gets to the best part, it’s building up to the climax, and then, there’s that mistake. Reading the book before it’s published gives me a chance to fix it. Instead of reading the book right after it’s published, why not read it right before it’s publish and fix all the errors that I find just reading it like a normal book? That’s what I thought. I’ll be a proofreader and fix them. Make it easier on all those readers like me who get annoyed with those errors that stick out.

And so I did. It’s been slow, but I’ve enjoyed it immensely. Sure, I’m not perfect. There’s always going to be at least one error that you’ll miss. But if I can help an author out to make their book that much better, I’m not going to stand back and do nothing. If an author will trust me enough to give me their book before they’re brave enough to give it to the world, why would I turn them down?

Writers, keep writing. Editors, keep editing. Readers, keep reading. You are all important in the book world. If there were no writers, there wouldn’t be books. If there were no editors, we wouldn’t be able to stand the books. And if there were no readers to read the books, why are we writing?

I want to encourage you all to keep doing what you do best, even if it’s only reading. God has blessed us all with different talents, don’t try to be someone you’re not.

Be yourself, everyone else is taken.

*All pictures taken from pinterest or google images. 

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Surrender release!

Hey everyone! Today I'm sharing in the blog tour for the release of a wonderful piano hymn arrangement book! I've played through a couple of them, and they are BEAUTIFUL! If you play piano at all, you need  check it out! :) Also, there's an awesome giveaway, but it ends tomorrow, so be sure and enter soon!

Calling all pianists! With a Joyful Noise has released a new piano solo book for late-intermediate to early-advanced pianists. Whether you are your church's pianist or you simply enjoy learning new music for personal enjoyment and reflection, finding new music books is always a joy. Coming from a church pianist who knows the struggle of finding new offertories, Amanda Tero has taken timeless songs and woven advanced techniques into simple, relaxing settings.

The songs in the piano solo book are commonly known as “invitation songs,” and the messages ring true. Have we laid all on the altar for God to control? Have we acknowledge our need for Christ and turned fully to Him? Have we truly surrendered all to Him? Are we daily seeking to be near Him so that we can say in assurance, “It is well with my soul?” Are we eagerly awaiting His eternal plans for us or do we still cling to that which will one day fade away?

Listen to all of the songs on YouTube.

About the Book
Level: Late-intermediate/Early Advanced
Pages: 37

the Book

Visit www.withajoyfulnoise.com or email Amanda at withajoyfulnoise@gmail.com for more information on purchasing your own copy (digital or print).

About the Arranger

Amanda Tero is a born-again believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, currently living and teaching in Mississippi. She has played piano since 1998, studying under Karen Tero, Donna Hopkins, and Shelley Hayes. The Lord has given her opportunities to be involved in accompaniment, congregational playing, hymn-arranging, and recording since

Connect with




Since not all blog-readers are pianists, there are two giveaways going on, so no one is left out! First, you may enter for a physical copy of Amanda's piano solo CD, The Solid Rock. Second, you may
enter to win a print copy of Surrender for yourself. Note: these giveaways are open to U.S. Residents only (non-U.S.residents may enter the giveaway for Surrender if they would like to win a digital copy instead).

Be sure to hop by the other great blogs that are featuring Surrender on their blogs this month!


Saturday, June 11, 2016

Friends, Starbucks, and an announcment!!!

Hey  all!! So. . .you might have realized that I didn't post yesterday. And. . .that was actually on purpose. Because I had (or rather, have) a fun post planned for  today! 
Guess what I'm doing right now?!?!

 That's right!! I'm at Starbucks meeting a pen-pal/internet friend! And I've enlisted her help with this post! My writing will be in black,and hers will be in blue.  Kaitlyn, say hello!


Oh, come-on, say a little more. ;)

A little more. ;)

You're bad 

Yep, that would  be me!

Haha, yeah... this is what we're like together. Although sometimes it can worse..like when you threatened to strangle me... that got called off, right?

Well... I'm still trying to decide.  You DID kill a certain favorite character of mine...

Nooo! Now, remember, I let you read some certain scenes!

Yeah, I guess that's true.  Anyway.  YOU KILLED HIM!!!!!!!

I didn't kill him. It was his time to die! I can get you a Bible verse to back this up...

Jesseca, Jesseca, Jesseca.  Umm... nice trump card.  How am I supposed to answer that?

You're not. I get the last word. B-)


Okay...umm, I wasn't quite expecting that.

Weeeeeell, I don't have anything to say, really.

Ahh. Okay. We could talk about what we're here to announce together! 

OK.  But you should really be the one to announce this spectacular  thing, as it IS your news, after all...

Okay. But...oh, just a sec, Kaitlyn's younger sister, Karalyn, wants to say something. She has been here listening (or rather, reading and listening)  to our whole conversation. ;)


Mmmm. I thought you wanted to say more then that! Say hi!


Karalyn, listen to the lovely lady.  This IS her blog, after all!

Who? What lady? 😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂😂
Gooooooood bye!!!!!!!!!😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎😎

Okay...well. It looks like  my blog as been hijacked. By smiley faces. Allegedly. B-)

But. I think we were here to announce something. And we are!! There is something I'm so, so SUPER excited to share it with you guys! And that is... the final cover for... The Silent Blade!!!

Eeeppp!! Isn't it beautiful?!?! 

Yes it is, ladies and gentlemen!!!!!!!!!! *Crowd erupts into applause* Congratulations Jesseca!!!!!!!!!!!!

Thank you , Kaitlyn!! :D And the release date is only a little more than a month away!!! I'm sooo excited!

Well, I think that's all for this post. ;) What so you think of the cover?!?! It's ten times better then I ever expected it to be! I'd highly recommend Amanda Tero as a cover designer! She did an awesome job!
Hope you guys have an amazing weekend! :) And I also hope we didn't utterly confuse you with this post. ;P 
Oh, and say goodbye, Kaitlyn. But say more than just "goodbye". ;) 

Goodb- sorry.  You want me to say more than that.  So, farewell wonderful subscribers!  Auf wiedersehen!  Adios!  10-4!  Over and out!! *Waves and walks away*

Bye, all!!! :D

Monday, June 6, 2016

D-Day: June 6th, 1944

Imagine the sea in front of you. The water is not the bright, glistening reflection of glass you would have hoped for. On the contrary, the seas are stormy this time of year. The waves crash against brilliant white beaches in the distance. The sky is cloudy, further attesting to the fact that this is not a good time for the crossing. However, even these stormy seas are a break in the violent weather that has been hammering the channel for the past few weeks. 

One small reprieve.  It was now or never. 

This morning, the news you had been both waiting anxiously for, yet, at the same time, dreading, was announced. 

The commander had given the order. 

D-Day was to be today.  

A look at the men and the ships around you was enough to strike fear in the heart of anyone. The largest armada ever assembled, 6,939 ships, had gathered together for a surprise attack against the German forces on the beaches of Normandy, France.  A pride and a willingness to fight for your country swells in you, but at the same time, fear grips you. What was secure and sure this morning is about to be shattered.  Who knows if you will make it through the day? This may be the last time you write home, the last time you look at the picture of your family, or clasp hands with your best friend. Today, all the training you went through will seem to have been just games. 

This morning everyone was together. Safe. Alive. But by the time June the 7th dawns upon the land, 4,300 souls from the allied powers woulds would be taken from this world and ushered into eternity. 
These would be men you had trained with, men you had talked and joked with, men who had had the same longing for home that you did. 

These men you would never see again. Never again would they return to the land that they loved. The girlfriends, mothers, fathers and families left behind would forever pay the price for what these men did on those early morning hours on the beaches of France. 

That young soldier who hardly looked old enough to shave, the one who had dreamed of being a journalist, would never return to his paper. 

The one you had noticed in the mess hall who sat alone with a letter would never again see the face if his finance smiling up at him. 

And the one you had shared a bunk with would never go home to the fly the planes he had spoken about with such anticipation in his eyes. Today those eyes would be forever closed, only to be opened on the other side of eternity. 

This is the sacrifice that has been paid for freedom. 

Seventy-two years ago today, the allied forces attacked the German army in France. Less than a month later, over one million allied troops were marching through France on their way to Germany. 

And there were so many that would never return home. 

I pray we will never forget the sacrifice that was made by these brave men so that we might be free. 

D-Day 1944—D-Day 2016  
72 years.  
A sacrifice never forgotten.