Blog Tour: Through Waters Deep

Book one in the Waves of Freedom Series.

Sarah Sundin released her latest series this summer, and instead of following the B-17 pilots and flight nurses of World War II, Sundin takes to the seas in Through Waters Deep.

Set in early 1941, readers can expect a little Nancy Drew and a lot of Boston scenery.

Naval officer Jim Avery is reunited with former classmate Mary Stirling on shore. When evidence of sabotage on the USS Atwood is found, Jim and Mary form a special bond as they work together to help crack the case.

As always, Sundin writes in rich historical detail, putting you on a destroyer facing German U-boats and torpedoes, or on shore along cobblestone streets in Boston.

Photo evidence of Boston 2009.
Photo evidence of Boston 2009.

The scenery took me back to my first Boston trip in 2009, when I took an impromptu trip to the East Coast with my friend Gwen. We ate lobster chowder (chow-dah), took in a Celtics game, toured Fenway and soaked up all the history surrounding us.

Thank you to Litfuse Publicity for sending me a copy of this book!

Save the date! Book two, Anchor in the Storm, will release next summer!


Blog Tour: Summer’s List


Two things caught my eye when the press release for Summer’s List by Anita Higman arrived in my inbox: 1, I (kind of) share the name of the title character; and 2, said character manages an independent bookstore (hello, dream job!).

A third thing that caught my attention was the book’s author, who stopped by A Writer’s Purpose when her novel A Marriage in Middlebury was released in November 2013.

I wasted no time to request a review copy from Litfuse Publicity Group and upon the book’s release in early June, the book was in my mailbox.

Summer lives a life of selflessness, putting the needs of others before her own. She passed up college to care for her dying parents, and she took over her grandmother’s bookstore when age and health prevented her from working. Her path was determined by the decisions to care for others, with little thought to herself.

But Summer’s sacrifices did not go unnoticed by her grandmother, who presents her granddaughter with a list (Summer’s list) of adventures and goals to complete. There’s a catch: Summer has to complete the bucket list of sorts with an old childhood friend, Martin, who she hasn’t seen since they were much younger.

This work of Christian fiction includes a cast of characters with many hurts, and while it’s a story of forgiveness and second chances, there’s also a sweet love story beneath the surface.

Summer’s List is a perfect read for the season.

Do you have a list?

A Book for the Holidays


Christmas music plays and my Holiday Mornings candle burns as I sit down to write this. Litfuse Publicity sent me Where Treetops Glisten back in September, but I wanted to wait closer to Christmas to share this novel of courage and Christmas romance set during World War II.

I have blogged about author Sarah Sundin ever since I came across her Wings of Nightingale series. Sundin teamed up with authors Tricia Goyer and Cara Putman for a special Christmas story centered around three siblings that spans the war.

There’s Abigail, a college student who lost her love in the attack on Pearl Harbor. There’s Pete, a fighter pilot, back home in Indiana after a European Theatre tour. And there’s Merry, a combat nurse on the front lines who is betrayed by the person who matters most.

The Turner family has dealt with its share of heartaches, but at the center is grandmother Louise. Strong in faith and wisdom, Louise encourages, mends and guides her three grandchildren as best she can while spreading the joy and hope of Christmas.

This novella is the perfect book to curl up in front of the fire place on these cold days. And, bonus, cookie recipes are included!

Happy reading and Merry Christmas!

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Merry Christmas from my puppies, La Di and Bailey!


A Marriage in Middlebury Kindle Giveaway

Enter Today | 11/18 – 12/12!
anita higman a marriage in middleburyThanks to Litfuse Publicity Group, I received an advanced copy of Anita Higman’s latest, “A Marriage in Middlebury,” released Nov. 5. Click the image to the left to enter the “Tea for Two” giveaway by Dec. 12!

Everyone has a plan for their lives, but often times a decision we make, or a decision made for us sets us on a new path. Higman’s story of forgiveness in “A Marriage in Middlebury,” follows a young couple torn apart from a forced decision, and how their lives move forward on separate paths, only to reconnect many years later.

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight,” — Proverbs 3:5-6

Charlotte Rose Hill is a lovable character whom everyone appreciates, but she quietly harbors offenses and heartbreak with a smile on her face. When her first love, Sam Wilder, reappears in her life with his fiance, Charlotte learns valuable lessons in forgiveness and reconciliation. The other colorful characters of the small-town setting add to the theme of second chances.

I asked Ms. Higman a few questions about the inspiration and setting of her latest novel:

Q and A with author Anita Higman

Q: What was the inspiration behind this story?

A: The idea for the heroine and the story, “A Marriage in Middlebury,” came from my absolute love of tearooms in Texas. More than a decade ago I met a women named Linda Becker who opened a tearoom in the Houston burbs called Tea for Two. Her eatery and gift shop did so well she opened a second shop. Throughout the years I’ve enjoyed her wonderful tearoom fare as well as the quaint ambiance. Linda’s tearoom isn’t just a cafe — it’s a gathering place for friends, a place to eat home-cooked food and a place so cozy you don’t want to leave. As a writer I thought it might be fun to create a heroine who owns a tearoom similar to Linda’s.

Q: You write of teas, flowers, and antiques (among other things), are these some of your favorite things?

A: Yes, absolutely. I love tea, because it’s such a friendly beverage. I have loved flowers my whole life and had a big garden when I was growing up on our farm in Oklahoma. My favorite flowers are irises, lilacs, and bridal wreath. It’s funny, but the older I get, the more I love antiques. I wonder if there is a correlation there…

Q: What is your favorite movie to watch and what tea would you drink with it?

A: I love the latest version of “Jane Eyre.” Amazing film. I’d choose Earl Grey to go with this movie, but then I love Earl Grey with everything.

Q: I love the small town setting. Is it based off a place you’ve lived or visited?

A: Middlebury, Texas is a fictitious town, and yet the area where it is located is all correct. I grew up on a farm near a small town, and so I’m very familiar with the inner workings of small-town life. Fascinating stuff.

What I’m Reading Wednesday

I have a special treat today for my weekly “What I’m Reading Wednesday” post! This week’s book is by Christian historical author Sarah Sundin (I have previously posted about two other of her novels). Her latest novel, “With Every Letter,” is the first book of her Wings of the Nightingale series, and was released last month.

But rather than doing my usual post about the book and author, Sarah herself offers some insight into her novels!

Here is my Q and A with Sarah:

Q: Your novels include an amazing amount of historical detail. How much time do you spend researching per novel?

A: That’s hard to pick out. I do a lot of research before I start the story to make sure the story works in the context of history, but then I do “spot” research during the writing phase for the little details. While writing the Wings of Glory series, I didn’t have contracts or deadlines, so I had the luxury of unlimited research time. I probably spent about 3 years overall just researching, plus another 3 years actual writing and rewriting. With the Wings of the Nightingale series, I have a year to write each book. I’d estimate about one-quarter of my writing time is research now.

Q: The Wings of Glory as well as the Wings of the Nightingale series takes place during WWII. What is it about that era you connect with?

A: I love so much about the era, from the music to the uniforms. But mostly, I’m drawn to the sheer scope of the war and how everyone pulled together for a common cause. This was an age when ordinary men learned they could do extraordinary things, and women explored new roles—while remaining ladies.

Q: If you had lived during WWII, what job do you think you would have pursued and why?

A: That depends on where I was in life. If I weren’t married, I might still have pursued pharmacy. There was a serious shortage of pharmacists during the war, and women were actively recruited. The idea of being a pioneer—but in a safe and clean profession (I’m a wimp)—would have appealed to me. If I were married with kids, I probably would have stayed at home but immersed myself in volunteering and community work.

Q: You have turned out so many novels during your literary career. How do you conquer writer’s block?

A: I don’t really get writer’s block. I have the opposite problem of too much story, too little time. When I don’t know where to start, usually at the start of a chapter, I do two things. First I read a few chapters of what I’ve already written to get back in the flow of the story. If that doesn’t work, I give myself permission to write garbage. I write something, anything, to get started, knowing I’ll come back and delete it later. The funny thing is, those openings often end up being my favorites and I rarely delete them.

Q: You are a wife, a mother, a pharmacist, a Sunday school teacher and a women’s small group leader, where do you find the time to write?

A: Replace “find the time” with “make the time.” I schedule it into my days and weeks, even when I started ten years ago. At first it was two hours a day during naptime. Now it’s forty hours a week, primarily in school hours, but also bits and pieces on the weekends and evenings—for example, I do a lot of things on my laptop on the couch with my family while we watch TV.

Q: What are you reading right now?

A: I just finished “Flight of the Earls” by Michael Reynolds, which comes out in January 2013. It’s a beautiful story about Irish immigrants in the 1840s. I got to read this debut novel for endorsement, and I think it will be very well received. Excellent writing.

Read more about Sarah’s novels and follow her blog on her website.

Thank you, Sarah!

What I’m Reading Wednesday

The WWII-era historical readings continue with Sarah Sundin’s “A Memory Between Us,” book two of the Wings of Glory series.

This story follows a young Army nurse and a dashing B-17 bomber pilot stationed in England. I absolutely love the English setting complete with fish and chips!

Sundin weaves the biblical story of Ruth and Boaz in this book. Her characters are Ruth, a woman who feels unforgiven for her sins and who leaves home to become a nurse to support her younger siblings. And then Jack, a wounded pilot who struggles with the decision to follow God’s calling as a military leader or follow his dad’s calling as a pastor.

Over a span of a year Jack slowly gains the trust of Ruth and of course a romance develops, but evil weaves its way into the story and the love birds are torn apart. They turn to God to shed light on the truth and I won’t spoil the ending for you.

Sundin amazes me with the amount of research she does for her novels, especially when it comes to WWII-era planes. Lucky for me I work on an Army-Air Force joint base and have access to historical planes. Unfortunately I couldn’t find a B-17 Flying Fortress, but I took a stroll and admired these following beauties:

Located on McChord Field.

I am so happy this series is three books and I have one more left to read! I took a little break from the 1940s reading, but will pick back up shortly. This month Sundin also released a book in a new series, Wings of the Nightingale, which I placed a hold on at the library.

What are you reading this week?

What I’m Reading Wednesday

After such a positive response to my “What I’m Reading Wednesday” post last week, I am even more excited about this weekly post!

I have the type of personality that when I learn of or hear of something that interests me, I have to research everything about it. For example, after I watched “The Kennedys” mini-series I checked out every book from the library that I could find about the entire Kennedy family.

I have always been fascinated with historical fiction set during WWII. I love reading stories about couples falling in love during the war and how women found roles during that time period. I actually read two books this week that are about that time period, but I will write about one today, “A Distant Melody” by Sarah Sundin.

I read a lot of fiction, but I haven’t read a lot of Christian fiction. I saw in a catalog that Sundin has a new book coming out this month, but I had never read anything of hers. I decided to read one of her older books in “A Distant Melody” which is book one of her Wings of Glory series.

The book is 430 pages but I read it in three days. I could NOT put it down! The book follows a young pilot headed off to war and a young woman he briefly meets and leaves behind. The two correspond by letters for a year and their friendship develops into something deeper. There are MANY conflicts to the point where it makes you question if the guy gets the girl in the end, but I don’t want to spoil the ending for you…

FYI “A Distant Melody” is available on Amazon for one penny. You’re welcome.

I already checked out the second book of the series. Stay tuned…