Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Interview ♦ Book Spotlight ♦ Bonnie Leon ♦ Giveaway


Hi, Bonnie, welcome to my blog. I’m delighted to have you here. So, let’s settle down for a little Q&A so we can get to know you.

Peg: Tell us five random things about you.

  1. This August I will have been married to my first love for 46 years.
  2. My favorite color is powder blue.
  3. I love dogs more than cats. 
  4. Lake fishing is one of my favorite ways to relax.
  5. I used to raise drop-calves.

Peg: When reading, what is your favorite genre? And what are you reading right now?

Bonnie: Historical fiction is my favorite. Right now I’m reading a book by Joyce A. Scott called  Graveside Manor, October’s Eve. It’s not my usual genre choice, but so far it’s delightful.

Peg: I’m always curious about other writer’s habits, quirks, and the like – background music or complete silence? Do you snack while you write? Share some of yours.

Bonnie: I need quiet to write, but sometimes background music without lyrics is nice. My favorite way to write is in my office with my window open and a breeze setting my wind chimes to singing. I usually don’t eat when I write except sometimes I’ll munch on hard candy or jelly bellies. My favorite jelly belly is popcorn flavor.

Peg: Popcorn? I love popcorn. Sounds yummy! Butter and salt flavoring added, right? Gotta have it 🍿🍿

What sparks your creativity when feeling drained?

Bonnie:  Inspiration, usually from a moving true story or scripture.

Peg: If you could spend the day with one contemporary (living) person … NOT family … who would it be, and why.

Bonnie:  I greatly admire Condoleeza Rice and would love to spend time with her. She’s an extraordinary woman with an incredibly interesting life.

Peg: What is your most difficult writing obstacle and how do you overcome it?

Bonnie: I’ve been struggling with my vision for several years and was recently diagnosed with MacTel II. I’m losing my central vision, which makes doing research and editing extremely difficult. Reading is also a challenge. I’ve been listening to audio books.

Peg: Now, let’s get to the book we’re featuring today.

·       Title: Return to the Misty Shore
·       Publisher: Ashberry Lane Publishing
·       Release Date: April 15, 2017
·       Genre: Historical Romance
·       Target Audience: Women of all ages.
·       Stand-alone, or series: It is book #3 in the Northern Lights Series.

Purchase link(s):       Amazon http://amzn.to/2pCjQT3
Barnes and Noble http://bit.ly/2qUi7Nb
Smashwords - http://bit.ly/2q6ZaEh

Peg: What’s the book about and how did you come to write it?

In the spring of 1885, Luba Engstrom meets Nicholas Matroona, a strong, brooding Native from the island of Unalaska. Against her parents’ wishes, she elopes, believing love will be enough to bridge the gap between the civilized world of Juneau and the primitive culture of Nicholas’s small village. After all, before Luba was born, her mother lived on a wild Alaskan island until she was forced to leave when a tsunami destroyed her people. But from the moment Luba arrives at Nicholas’s home, she struggles to adapt and learn the village ways. 

Will the conflict between her husband’s belief in ancient gods and her faith in Jesus Christ the Redeemer destroy Luba and Nicholas’s relationship? 

Return to the Misty Shore—the third book in the Northern Lights series.

Peg: Who’s your favorite character in this story?

Bonnie: I care about them all, but Luba is my favorite. She came onto the scene in book one of this series and I know her well. In this book she put herself in a difficult situation and it was great fun to see how she responded to and overcame the challenges of village life and marriage.

Where to find Bonnie:

About Bonnie:
Bonnie Leon is the author of twenty-two novels, including the recently released Return to the Misty Shore, the popular Alaskan Skies and bestselling The Journey of Eleven Moons.
Bonnie’s books are being read internationally and she hears from readers in Australia, Europe, Poland, and even Africa. 
She enjoys speaking for women’s groups and teaching at writing seminars and conventions and especially delights in mentoring young authors. These days, her time is filled with writing, being a grandmother and relishing precious time with her aged mother.
Bonnie and her husband, Greg, live in Southern Oregon. They have three grown children and eight grandchildren.

Monday, May 29, 2017

Coming Soon! Hidden Assets ♦ Leeann Betts ♦ Behind the scenes

Please welcome guest blogger author Leeann Betts as she shares her 'story behind the story' in the writing of Hidden Assets, in her By The Numbers series. 

Picture courtesy Pixabay Images
♦ ♦ ♦

Hidden Assets – the Story behind the story   
By Leeann Betts                    

Stories are everywhere, if we simply look for them.

I spent some time last year with a friend who had just taken a train ride from Denver to San Francisco. She gave me a lot of insight into how the ride went, about the dining room, the movement of the train, the miles during the night where there isn’t much to see, and how she’d read three books in three days, which was a real treat for her.

I got to thinking how much more exciting the trip would have been if she’d stumbled across a body. Or saw someone being thrown from the train. Okay, I love The Orient Express by Agatha Christie.

When I sat down to start writing Hidden Assets, I just knew there had to be a train involved somehow.

Except, the bulk of the story takes place at a B&B in Wyoming.

But then I remembered Carly’s second book, There Was a Crooked Man, and how an unrelated mystery happened on their plane ride to New Mexico. So I decided to change it up a bit by making the mystery on the train part of the overall story.

I did some research on train travel, and I’ve been to Wyoming a number of times, so pulling together a mystery set in a small town in rural Wyoming wasn’t too difficult.

As I said, stories are everywhere. We simply need to look for them and ask the big What If? questions.

Book Title:  Hidden Assets
Author:  Leeann Betts
Publisher:  PLS Bookworks
Release Date:  June 30, 2017 Coming soon!
Genre:  cozy mystery
Stand-alone or series: Book 6 in By the Numbers series

Purchase Link:  http://amzn.to/2dHfgCE  for Leeann's other books. 

About the Book:
Carly Turnquist, forensic accountant, responds to a call from her friend, Anne, who is in the middle of a nasty divorce, and travels to Wyoming to help find assets Anne thinks her husband has stolen. But the mystery begins before Carly even arrives when she sees a man thrown off a train. Except there’s no body. Husband Mike uncovers an illegal scam in a computer program he has been asked to upgrade, and then Anne is arrested for her ex’s murder. Can Carly figure out what’s going on, and why a strange couple is digging in Anne’s basement? Or will she disappear along with the artwork, coins, and money?

About Leaan:

Leeann Betts writes contemporary suspense, while her real-life persona, Donna Schlachter, pens historical suspense. She has released five titles in her cozy mystery series, By the Numbers. In addition, Leeann has written a devotional for accountants, bookkeepers, and financial folk, Counting the Days, and with her real-life persona, Donna Schlachter, has published a book on writing, Nuggets of Writing Gold, a compilation of essays, articles, and exercises on the craft. She publishes a free quarterly newsletter that includes a book review and articles on writing and books of interest to readers and writers. You can subscribe at www.LeeannBetts.com or follow Leeann at www.AllBettsAreOff.wordpress.com 

All books are available on Amazon.com in digital and print.

You can also find Leeann at: 

Friday, May 26, 2017

The Man with the Famous Last Name

Whispers in Purple is pleased to present this week's Devotional for your edification. I hope you will enjoy it.

The Man With the Famous Last Name

by Michelle De Bruin

Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26
The story of Lazarus from John 11 is a real picture of Jesus’ power over the grave. Death, suffering, sickness, sorrow, and unbelief all die their own deaths in the face of a story like this one. Perhaps you know the story of Lazarus. He was from Bethany and lived with his two sisters. After falling sick, Lazarus dies. Word reaches Jesus that his friend is gone. Jesus arrives in Bethany after Lazarus’ body had been placed in a tomb. Mary and Martha, sisters of the dead man, meet Jesus on the road. Jesus asks in verse 26 if they believe in him as the resurrection and the life. Each in their own way assure him that they do.
Deeply moved and in tears, Jesus approaches the tomb holding his friend, issues a command to remove the stone blocking the entrance, prays, and tells Lazarus to come out.

Lazarus comes out.

Jesus tells the family standing around to remove the grave clothes and let him go.

In the days following, what was life like for Lazarus? The Bible records no spoken words belonging to Lazarus. We wonder if Lazarus was a common man living an ordinary life. We don’t know much about him except that he was someone else’s brother. He appears in the gospel story, not because of any shining qualities in his personality nor because of any legendary achievements, but only because of the amazing miracle that happened to him.

Later in the narratives, we find Lazarus again. This time, he is in attendance at a dinner where Jesus and his disciples are also present. He is recognized as, “Lazarus, whom Jesus raised from the dead.”

Everyone has a first name. We all go by the names our parents gave us or nicknames we have earned over time. We also have a last name; a surname to identify us as belonging to a certain family, or holding a particular history, or originating from a specific location. Lazarus kept his first name, but Jesus defined his last name. For Lazarus, identity, history, and origin began with Jesus. Now Lazarus’ full name reads, “Lazarus Whom Jesus Raised From the Dead.”

He was still a common person living an ordinary life, but he had an uncommon, extraordinary witness to the power of God. Everything he had been given, all that he was able to accomplish, each relationship he valued was only because of the miracle Jesus had worked in his life.

John 11:26 ends with the words, “Do you believe this?” Jesus is asking the sisters if they believe in him as the only one who holds the power over death and suffering.

Jesus asks us, “Do you believe this?” Can you stand with Martha and say, “Yes, Lord, I believe that you are the Christ, the Son of God, who was to come into the world” (verse 27). Because of this answer, Martha was about to witness the power of God. She, too, qualified for a famous last name. Maybe hers would read something like, “Martha Who Saw Death Defeated.”

Have you witnessed the power of God either in your own life or in the life of someone close to you? Have you seen prayers answered, diseases healed, lives saved, or hearts changed? If you can answer yes, then perhaps Jesus is waiting to give you a famous last name.

♦ ♦ ♦

Michelle is the Spiritual Services Facilitator for an organization that provides services for people with both mental and physical disabilities. In this role, she plans and leads retreats, teaches Bible studies, offers care during times of grief, and writes devotions. Michelle lives with her husband and two teenage sons in Iowa. She's recently completed the manuscript for a historical romance drawn from her local history and family heritage. The story explores the themes of discerning the call to ministry, growing through grief, and discovering true love. 

Find Michelle at:
♦LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/michelle-de-bruin-63b6b5a2/
♦Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/MichelleDB40/