Read an excerpt from The Friendship List by Susan Mallery from @HQNBooks! #HarelquinBooks #HarelquinRomance


Welcome! Read an excerpt from this new release below...

The Friendship List: A Novel
By Susan Mallery
Adult Contemporary Romance
Hardcover & ebook, 384 Pages
August 4, 2020 by HQN Books

Summary

Already a worldwide success in mass market and trade paperback formats, Susan Mallery’s newest hardcover is an emotional, witty, and heartfelt story about two best friends who are determined to help one another shake things up and live life to the fullest...only to discover that possibilities are everywhere--especially in the most unexpected of places.

Ellen and Unity have been best friends basically since birth, but they couldn’t be more different. Unity married her childhood sweetheart just after high school and became an Army wife, moving from base to base…until her husband's shocking death in the line of duty leaves her a widow. Grief-stricken, it’s time for Unity to come back home to Ellen—the only person she can trust to help her rebuild her life. But Ellen has troubles of her own. Boys never seemed to notice Ellen…until one got her pregnant in high school and disappeared. Her son is now 17 and she’s wondering what to do with herself now that he’s heading off to college and he's literally her entire world.

But now that Ellen and Unity are reunited, they’re done with their stale lives. It’s time to shake things up and start living again, knowing that they'll always have one another to lean on. So they create a list of challenges they have to accomplish--everything from getting a tattoo to skydiving to staying out all night. And whoever completes the most challenges is the winner. But with new adventures and love just around the corner, there’s no such thing as losing…



Excerpt



Chapter One

“I should have married money,” Ellen Fox said glumly. “That would have solved all my problems.”

Unity Leandre, her best friend, practically since birth, raised her eyebrows. “Because that was an option so many times and you kept saying no?”

“It could have been. Maybe. If I’d ever, you know, met a rich guy I liked and wanted to marry.”

“Wouldn’t having him want to marry you be an equally important part of the equation?”

Ellen groaned. “This is not a good time for logic. This is a good time for sympathy. Or giving me a winning lottery ticket. We’ve been friends for years and you’ve never once given me a winning lottery ticket.”

Unity picked up her coffee and smiled. “True, but I did give you my pony rides when we celebrated our eighth birthdays.”

A point she would have to concede, Ellen thought. With their birthdays so close together, they’d often had shared parties. The summer they’d turned eight, Unity’s mom had arranged for pony rides at a nearby farm. Unity had enjoyed herself, but Ellen had fallen in love with scruffy Mr. Peepers, the crabby old pony who carried them around the paddock. At Ellen’s declaration of affection for the pony, Unity had handed over the rest of her ride tickets, content to watch Ellen on Mr. Peepers’s wide back.

“You were wonderful about the pony rides,” Ellen said earnestly, “And I love that you were so generous. But right now I really need a small fortune. Nothing overwhelming. Just a tasteful million or so. In return, I’ll give back the rides on Mr. Peepers.”

Unity reached across the kitchen table and touched Ellen’s arm. “He really wants to go to UCLA?”

Ellen nodded, afraid if she spoke, she would whimper. After sucking in a breath, she managed to say, “He does. Even with a partial scholarship, the price is going to kill me.” She braced herself for the ugly reality. “Out-of-state costs, including room and board, are about sixty-four thousand dollars.” Ellen felt her heart skip a beat and not out of excitement. “A year. A year! I don’t even bring home that much after taxes. Who has that kind of money? It might as well be a million dollars.”

Unity nodded. “Okay, now marrying money makes sense.”

“I don’t have a lot of options.” Ellen pressed her hand to her chest and told herself she wasn’t having a heart attack. “You know I’d do anything for Coop and I’ll figure this out, but those numbers are terrifying. I have to start buying lottery scratchers and get a second job.” She looked at Unity. “How much do you think they make at Starbucks? I could work nights.”

Unity, five inches taller, with long straight blond hair, grabbed her hands. “Last month it was University of Oklahoma and the month before that, he wanted to go to Notre Dame. Cooper has changed his mind a dozen times. Wait until you go look at colleges this summer and he figures out what he really wants, then see who offers the best financial aid before you panic.” Her mouth curved up in a smile. “No offense, Ellen, but I’ve tasted your coffee. You shouldn’t be working anywhere near a Starbucks.”

“Very funny.” Ellen squeezed her hands. “You’re right. He’s barely seventeen. He won’t be a senior until September. I have time. And I’m saving money every month.”

It was how she’d been raised, she thought. To be practical, to take responsibility. If only her parents had thought to mention marrying for money.

“After our road trip, he may decide he wants to go to the University of Washington after all, and that would solve all my problems.”

Not just the money ones, but the loneliness ones, she thought wistfully. Because after eighteen years of them being a team, her nearly grown-up baby boy was going to leave her.

“Stop,” Unity said. “You’re getting sad. I can see it.”

“I hate that you know me so well.”

“No, you don’t.”

Ellen sighed. “No, I don’t, but you’re annoying.”

“You’re more annoying.”

They smiled at each other.

Unity stood, all five feet ten of her, and stretched. “I have to get going. You have young minds to mold and I have a backed-up kitchen sink to deal with, followed by a gate repair and something with a vacuum. The message wasn’t clear.” She looked at Ellen. “You going to be okay?”

Ellen nodded. “I’m fine. You’re right. Coop will change his mind fifteen more times. I’ll wait until it’s a sure thing, then have my breakdown.”

“See. You always have a plan.”

They walked to the front door. Ellen’s mind slid back to the ridiculous cost of college.

“Any of those old people you help have money?” she asked. “For the right price, I could be a trophy wife.”

Unity shook her head. “You’re thirty-four. The average resident of Silver Pines is in his seventies.”

“Marrying money would still solve all my problems.”

Unity hugged her, hanging on tight for an extra second. “You’re a freak.”

“I’m a momma bear with a cub.”

“Your cub is six foot three. It’s time to stop worrying.”

“That will never happen.”

“Which is why I love you. Talk later.”

Ellen smiled. “Have a good one. Avoid spiders.”

“Always.”

When Unity had driven away, Ellen returned to the kitchen where she quickly loaded the dishwasher, then packed her lunch. Cooper had left before six. He was doing some end-of-school-year fitness challenge. Something about running and Ellen wasn’t sure what. To be honest, when he went on about his workouts, it was really hard not to tune him out. Especially when she had things like tuition to worry about.

“Not anymore today,” she said out loud. She would worry again in the morning. Unity was right—Cooper was going to keep changing his mind. Their road trip to look at colleges was only a few weeks away. After that they would narrow the list and he would start to apply. Only then would she know the final number and have to figure out how to pay for it.

Until then she had plenty to keep her busy. She was giving pop quizzes in both fourth and sixth periods and she wanted to update her year-end tests for her two algebra classes. She needed to buy groceries and put gas in the car and go by the library to get all her summer reading on the reserve list.

As she finished her morning routine and drove to the high school where she taught, Ellen thought about Cooper and the college issue. While she was afraid she couldn’t afford the tuition, she had to admit it was a great problem to have. Seventeen years ago, she’d been a terrified teenager, about to be a single mom, with nothing between her and living on the streets except incredibly disappointed and angry parents who had been determined to make her see the error of her ways.

Through hard work and determination, she’d managed to pull herself together—raise Cooper, go to college, get a good job, buy a duplex and save money for her kid’s education. Yay her.

But it sure would have been a lot easier if she’d simply married someone with money.

*

“How is it possible to get a C- in Spanish?” Coach Keith Kinne asked, not bothering to keep his voice down. “Half the population in town speaks Spanish. Hell, your sister’s husband is Hispanic.” He glared at the strapping football player standing in front of him. “Luka, you’re an idiot.”

Luka hung his head. “Yes, Coach.”

“Don’t ‘yes, Coach’ me. You knew this was happening—you’ve known for weeks. And did you ask for help? Did you tell me?”

“No, Coach.”

Keith thought about strangling the kid but he wasn’t sure he could physically wrap his hands around the teen’s thick neck. He swore silently, knowing they were where they were and now he had to fix things—like he always did with his students.

“You know the rules,” he pointed out. “To play on any varsity team you have to get a C+ or better in every class. Did you think the rules didn’t apply to you?”

Luka, nearly six-five and two hundred and fifty pounds, slumped even more. “I thought I was doing okay.”

“Really? So you’d been getting better grades on your tests?”

“Not exactly.” He raised his head, his expression miserable. “I thought I could pull up my grade at the last minute.”

“How did that plan work out?”

“No bueno.”

Keith glared at him. “You think this is funny?”

“No, Coach.”

Keith shook his head. “You know there’s not a Spanish summer school class. That means we’re going to have to find an alternative.”

Despite his dark skin, Luka went pale. “Coach, don’t send me away.”

“No one gets sent away.” Sometimes athletes went to other districts that had a different summer curriculum. They stayed with families and focused on their studies.

“I need to stay with my family. My mom understands me.”

“It would be better for all of us if she understood Spanish.” Keith glared at the kid. “I’ll arrange for an online class. You’ll get a tutor. You will report to me twice a week, bringing me updates until you pass the class.” He sharpened his gaze. “With an A.”

Luka took a step back. “Coach, no! An A? I can’t.”

“Not with that attitude.”

“But, Coach.”

“You knew the rules and you broke them. You could have come to me for help early on. You know I’m always here for any of my students, but did you think about that or did you decide you were fine on your own?”

“I decided I was fine on my own,” Luka mumbled.

“Exactly. And deciding on your own is not how teams work. You go it alone and you fail.”

Tears filled Luka’s eyes. “Yes, Coach.”

Keith pointed to the door. Luka shuffled out. Keith sank into his chair. He’d been hard on the kid, but he needed to get the message across. Grades mattered. He was willing to help whenever he could, but he had to be told what was going on. He had a feeling Luka thought because he was a star athlete he was going to get special treatment. Maybe somewhere else, but not here. Forcing Luka to get an A sent a message to everyone who wanted to play varsity sports.

He’d barely turned to his computer when one of the freshman boys stuck his head in the office. “Coach Kinne! Coach Kinne! There’s a girl crying in the weight room.”

Keith silently groaned as he got up and jogged to the weight room, hoping he was about to deal with something simple like a broken arm or a concussion. He knew what to do for those kinds of things. Anything that was more emotional, honest to God, terrified him.

He walked into the weight room and found a group of guys huddled together. A petite, dark-haired girl he didn’t know sat on a bench at the far end, her hands covering her face, her sobs audible in the uneasy silence.

He looked at the guys. “She hurt?”

They shifted their weight and shook their heads. Damn. So it wasn’t physical. Why didn’t things ever go his way?

“Any of you responsible for whatever it is?” he asked.

More shaken heads with a couple of guys ducking out.

Keith pointed to the door so the rest of them left, then returned his attention to the crying girl. She was small and looked young. Maybe fifteen. Not one of his daughter’s friends or a school athlete—he knew all of them.

He approached the teen, trying to look friendly rather than menacing, then sat on a nearby bench.

“Hey,” he said softly. “I’m Coach Kinne.”

She sniffed. Her eyes were red, her skin pale. “I know who you are.”

“What’s going on?” Don’t be pregnant, don’t be pregnant, he chanted silently.

More tears spilled over. “I’m pregnant. The father is Dylan, only he says he’s not, and I can’t tell my m-mom because she’ll be so mad and he said he l-loved me.”

And just like that Keith watched his Monday fall directly into the crapper.

*

Keith left work exactly at three fifteen. He would be returning to his office to finish up paperwork, supervise a couple of workouts and review final grades for athletes hovering on the edge of academic problems. But first, he had pressing personal business.

He drove the two short miles to his house, walked inside and headed directly for his seventeen-year-old daughter’s room.

Lissa looked up from her laptop when he entered, her smile fading as she figured out he was in a mood. Despite the attitude, she was a beauty. Long dark hair, big brown eyes. Dammit all to hell—why couldn’t he have an ugly daughter who no guy would look at twice?

“Hi, Dad,” she said, sounding wary. “What’s up?”

“Spot check.”

She rolled her eyes. “Seriously? There is something wrong with you. I heard what happened at school today. I’m not dumb enough to date a guy like Dylan who would tell a tree stump he loved it if it would have sex with him. I’m not sleeping with anyone and I’m not pregnant. I told you—I’m not ready to have sex, as in I’m still a virgin. You’re obsessed. Would you feel better if I wore a chastity belt?”

“Yes, but you won’t. I’ve asked.”

“Da-ad. Why are you like this? Pregnancy isn’t the worst thing that could happen. I could be sick and dying. Wouldn’t that be terrible?”

“You can’t win this argument with logic. I’m irrational. I accept that. But I’m also the parent, so you have to deal with me being irrational.”

He pointed to her bathroom. She sighed the long-suffering sigh of those cursed with impossible fathers and got up. He followed her to the doorway and watched as she pulled the small plastic container out of the bathroom drawer and opened it.

Relief eased the tension in his body. Pills were missing. The right number of pills.

“You are a nightmare father,” his daughter said, shoving the pills back in the drawer. “I can’t wait until I’m eighteen and I can get the shot instead of having to take birth control pills. Then you’ll only bug me every few months.”

“I can’t wait, either.”

“It’s not like I even have a boyfriend.”

“You could be talking to someone online.”

Her annoyance faded as she smiled at him. “Dad, only one of us in this house does the online dating thing and it’s not me.”

“I don’t online date.”

“Fine. You pick up women online, then go off and have sex with them for the weekend. It’s gross. You should fall in love with someone you’re not embarrassed to bring home to meet me.”

“I’m not embarrassed. I just don’t want complications.”

“But you do want to have sex. It’s yucky.”

“Then why are we talking about it?” He pulled her close and hugged her, then kissed the top of her head. “Sorry, Lissa. I can’t help worrying about you.”

She looked up at him. “Dad, I’m taking my pills every day, not that it matters because I’m not having sex. I’m not. I’ve barely kissed a guy. Having you as my father makes it really difficult to date. Guys don’t want to mess with you and risk being beat up.”

“Good.”

She smiled even as she hit him in the arm. “You’re repressing my emotional growth.”

“Just don’t get pregnant.”

“You need to find a more positive message. How about ‘be your best self?’”

“That, too. Gotta go.”

“I’m having dinner with Jessie tonight. Remember?”

“No problem. Be home by ten.”

He got back in his truck but before starting the engine, he quickly texted Ellen. I need a couple of beers and a friendly ear. You around tonight?

The response came quickly. Only if you bring fried chicken. I have beer and ice cream.

You’re on. See you at six.

Excerpted from The Friendship List by Susan Mallery, Copyright © 2020 by Susan Mallery, Inc.. Published by HQN. 

About the Author


SUSAN MALLERY is the #1 New York Times bestselling author of novels about the relationships that define women's lives—family, friendship and romance. Library Journal says, “Mallery is the master of blending emotionally believable characters in realistic situations," and readers seem to agree—forty million copies of her books have been sold worldwide. Her warm, humorous stories make the world a happier place to live.

Susan grew up in California and now lives in Seattle with her husband. She's passionate about animal welfare, especially that of the two Ragdoll cats and adorable poodle who think of her as Mom.


What did you like about the excerpt? Will you be reading this one?

I Can't Wait for... A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow by Laura Taylor Namey & The Code for Love and Heartbreak by Jillian Cantor (Can't-Wait Wednesday/Waiting on Wednesday) #CWW #WOW


Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted here, at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and discuss the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. Generally they're books that have yet to be released. It's based on Waiting on Wednesday, hosted by the fabulous Jill at Breaking the Spine. If you're continuing with WOW, feel free to link those up as well! Find out more here.

So sorry this is going up late! The past week has been crazy as has this week so I hadn't gotten this post ready and then tonight I got a migraine. Fun times. 😐

Both of these are contemporary young adult books. The first one looks and sounds adorable. Plus I love mixing cultures and British accents, which I'm assuming the guy Lila meets will have. The second book is a retelling of Emma and since I'm a huge fan of hers and any retellings, I'm all for it! It also sounds just super cute. They're my picks this week...

A Cuban Girl's Guide to Tea and Tomorrow
By Laura Taylor Namey
YA Contemporary
Hardcover & ebook, 320 Pages
October 6, 2020 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers

Summary

Love & Gelato meets Don’t Date Rosa Santos in this charming, heartfelt story following a Miami girl who unexpectedly finds love—and herself—in a small English town.

For Lila Reyes, a summer in England was never part of the plan. The plan was 1) take over her abuela’s role as head baker at their panaderĂ­a, 2) move in with her best friend after graduation, and 3) live happily ever after with her boyfriend. But then the Trifecta happened, and everything—including Lila herself—fell apart.

Worried about Lila’s mental health, her parents make a new plan for her: Spend three months with family friends in Winchester, England, to relax and reset. But with the lack of sun, a grumpy inn cook, and a small town lacking Miami flavor (both in food and otherwise), what would be a dream trip for some feels more like a nightmare to Lila…until she meets Orion Maxwell.

A teashop clerk with troubles of his own, Orion is determined to help Lila out of her funk, and appoints himself as her personal tour guide. From Winchester’s drama-filled music scene to the sweeping English countryside, it isn’t long before Lila is not only charmed by Orion, but England itself. Soon a new future is beginning to form in Lila’s mind—one that would mean leaving everything she ever planned behind.

(Affiliate links included.)

The Code for Love and Heartbreak
By Jillian Cantor
YA Contemporary
Hardcover & ebook, 304 Pages
October 6, 2020 by Inkyard Press

Summary

In this contemporary romcom retelling of Jane Austen’s Emma by USA TODAY bestselling author Jillian Cantor, there’s nothing more complex—or unpredictable—than love.

When math genius Emma and her coding club co-president, George, are tasked with brainstorming a new project, The Code for Love is born.

George disapproves of Emma’s idea of creating a matchmaking app, accusing her of meddling in people’s lives. But all the happy new couples at school are proof that the app works. At least at first.

Emma’s code is flawless. So why is it that perfectly matched couples start breaking up, the wrong people keep falling for each other, and Emma’s own feelings defy any algorithm?

(Affiliate links included.)


Will you be reading either of these?

10 Things to Know About the Carolina Coast Series... Sea Glass Castle by T.I. Lowe (Guest Post) @TyndaleHouse


Welcome! Today I get to share a guest post from the author. Read below...

Sea Glass Castle
(The Carolina Coast Series #3)
By T.I. Lowe
Christian Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 320 Pages
August 1st 2020 by Tyndale Fiction

Summary

Sophia Prescott is still mending from the embarrassment of a highly publicized divorce from a pro football player, and the now-single mother is back in Sunset Cove, surrounded by the supporting love of her family and the Sand Queens. Sophia doesn’t think there’s any hope for starting over until an unexpected trip to the pediatrician’s office gives her a second chance after all.

Dr. Weston Sawyer knows all about lives shattering into millions of pieces. His own all but ended when a truck driver fell asleep at the wheel and barreled head-on into his pregnant wife’s sedan, killing her instantly and leaving Wes with a soul so wounded that it has refused to heal. He packed up and left swampy southern Alabama for South Carolina with the hope of fading into the sleepy coastal town of Sunset Cove. Instead, feisty brunette Sophia Prescott will have him braving something different and entirely unexpected. If Sophia and Wes can take the leap to give love another try, they just might find that hope has a way of coming back around and weaving into one’s heart.

(Affiliate links included.)

Guest Post:
10 Things to Know About the Carolina Coast Series

1. The book titles are also the names of the characters’ beach houses. Naming them is a fun thing beach house owners do, so I took this opportunity to use the names to clue readers in on the books’ themes. 

2. There are two friend groups throughout the series. The main group is the Sand Queens, who are also the main characters of the three books: Opal Gilbert, Josie Slater, and Sophia Prescott. The other group is the older busybodies called the Knitting Club. That’s a club I’d like to join when I turn seventy or eighty. They were so fun to write about, and this group also includes my favorite character of the series. See number 3. 

3. My favorite character of the series is Dalma Jean Burgess, a ninety-year-old who is a hoot! I know, I know. We aren’t supposed to name favorites, but this woman... At first glance she’s a spacy elderly lady, but she shares such rich nuggets of wisdom out of the blue that I dare the reader not to favor her too. 

4. Dalma Jean was not in the original draft of the series. This lady didn’t even introduce herself to me until I was doing rewrites. It could have saved me a lot of time if she’d said hello before that point, but I enjoyed her so much that I welcomed her into the series anyway. 

5. Driftwood Dreams was originally supposed to be the first book of the series, and Beach Haven was supposed to be the second. Ain’t gonna lie, when my editor suggested switching the order, it freaked me out! But I have to admit, she was so right about it. The rewrites were scary but so very worth it, and I’m beyond proud of what we ended up with. Readers seem to agree, so there’s that! 

6. August Bradford is the charming artist/hero in Driftwood Dreams. He was inspired by one of my characters from A Discovery of Hope, Duke Harris. The timing has never been right to write Duke’s story, but Driftwood Dreams gave me a chance to share it through August. I think fans of Duke will appreciate me finally doing this. 

7. Each book includes a recipe at the end that ties into the series. Beach Haven features “Not Opal’s Crab Biscuits,” because girlfriend cannot cook worth a lick. Driftwood Dreams includes my simpler version of the “Driftwood Diner Biscuits & Gravy” that appears in the story. It has shrimp and bacon in it. No going wrong with those two ingredients! Sea Glass Castle includes the famous “Sand Queens’ Summer Punch” recipe that readers will notice the Sand Queens enjoying throughout the series. Warning: the punch is addictive! 

8. Each book is dedicated to my daughter, Lydia, and presents her with a dare. Dare to be different. Dare to dream. Dare to declare your own destiny. The main characters face these dares, and my hope is that my daughter—as well as my readers—will take me up on them. The author’s note at the end of Sea Glass Castle explains this in more detail, so be sure to check it out. 

9. Sea Glass Castle is the first book I’ve written about a widower. Weston Sawyer was a challenge, but sharing his male perspective on something so devastating was very rewarding. By the time I completed the book, he had become my hero too. 

10. A charming troublemaker is introduced in Sea Glass Castle, and I enjoyed writing that scoundrel so much that he has inspired a spin-off series. Fingers crossed, I’ll have more to share about that soon. Stay tuned!

Other Books in the Series

(Linked to a Q&A with the author and an excerpt.)

About the Author


Tonya “T. I.” Lowe is a native of coastal South Carolina. She attended Coastal Carolina University and the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga, where she majored in psychology but excelled in creative writing. In 2014, Tonya independently published her first novel, Lulu’s CafĂ©, which quickly became a bestseller. Now the author of twelve published novels with hundreds of thousands of copies sold, she knows she’s just getting started and has many more stories to tell. She resides near Myrtle Beach with her family.



What did you think of the author's guest post? Have you been reading this series?

A Bridge Home by Virginia McCullough (Tour Launch & #Giveaway) #BHPrism @prismbooktours

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Note from the Author

Welcome back to Bluestone River, a town on the rise and the home of a legendary covered bridge and a breathtaking bird sanctuary. In A BRIDGE HOME, book 3 of my Back to Bluestone River series, Amy Morgan finds herself in the principal’s office in her daughter’s new school. It seems Cassie has an adjustment problem. That’s bad enough, but why did the principal have to be her old high school friend, Eric Wells? Since Eric once had feelings for Amy, unreturned feelings, he’s not happy to be cast in the role of disciplinarian. Both Eric and Amy came back to town just when a storm all but destroys the covered bridge, an event that starts a debate of the town’s direction.

Even more than A FAMILY FOR JASON and THE CHRISTMAS KISS, A BRIDGE HOME is a multigenerational story about the longing for home, family, and love that will last. Maybe at its heart, Amy and Eric’s story is about the power of believing in ourselves and each other. Be sure to enter the drawing!

—Virginia

A Bridge Home
(Back to Bluestone River #3)
By Virginia McCullough
Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 384 Pages
August 1, 2020 by Harlequin Heartwarming

Will a new beginning…

Lead to forever?


What good is a home without a family? School principal Eric Wells finally has the house he’s always wanted, but a painful childhood makes him question his ability to be a father. So when his high school crush Amy Morgan returns to Bluestone River with her troubled daughter, he’s surprised to find he wants to be there for both of them. Will Amy finally give him a chance?

(Affiliate links included.)

Tour Schedule

August 3rd:
August 4th:
August 5th:
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Other Books in the Series

(Linked to Amazon affiliate links.)

About the Author


Born and raised in Chicago, Virginia McCullough has been lucky enough to develop her writing career in many locations, including the coast of Maine, the mountains of North Carolina, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and currently, Northeast Wisconsin. She started her career in nonfiction, first writing articles and then books as a ghostwriter and coauthor. She’s written more than 100 books for physicians, business owners, professional speakers and many others with information to share or a story to tell.

Virginia’s books feature characters who could be your neighbors and friends. They come in all ages and struggle with everyday life issues in small-town environments that almost always include water—oceans, lakes, or rivers. The mother of two grown children, you’ll find Virginia with her nose a book, walking on trails or her neighborhood street, or she may be packing her bag to take off for her next adventure. And she’s always working on another story about hope, healing, and second chances.


Tour Giveaway


1 winner will receive a $25 Amazon eGift Card and a $25 Etsy eGift Card
Open internationally for those who are eligible
Ends August 12, 2020

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Ready to Trust by Tina Radcliffe (Tour Launch & #Giveaway) #RTPrism @prismbooktours

On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Author Interview

What inspired you to write READY TO TRUST? 

Ready to Trust is the second book in the Hearts of Oklahoma series about the Rainbolt siblings who were raised by the oldest sibling, Mitch. Book 2, Ready to Trust is Reece’s story. I wanted to write about a black sheep who was called back to the flock. That’s Reece. A hunky hero with a heart for the Lord who knows only too well about making mistakes and asking for forgiveness. I think deep down inside I wanted to share that Christian men can be hunky and still be faith heroes. 

If you could sum the book up in one sentence, what would you say? 

Ready to Trust is a tribute to the God of second chances. 

What challenged you about writing this story? 

It’s always challenging when I write characters who have made mistakes outside of my comfort zone. I have to dig deep to understand them and their journey without judgment and write with honesty. 

Which character do you most relate to and why? 

Growth as a writer and a Christian comes from writing about characters we do not relate to and having the courage and grace to love them anyhow. I love Reece and Claire in Ready to Trust, and they taught me a lot about having the courage to try again. 

What do you hope readers will take with them after they’ve read it? 


I hope readers will take away that not only is God the Lord of second chances, but he is a father who loves us unconditionally. Nothing can separate us from his love. Oh, yes, and of course, that Christian guys are hot too! 

What is something about you that is unique or we may not know? 

Ha! What a great question! I’m A.D.D and embrace is as my superpower. I’ve been in the army, and my other careers include oncology R.N., library cataloger, and pharmacy clerk. Once, I worked on the assembly line of a bean factory. 

Ready to Trust
(Hearts of Oklahoma #2)
By Tina Radcliffe
Christian Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 224 Pages
July 21, 2020 by Love Inspired

Proving he’s a changed man could be his biggest challenge yet.

Rancher Reece Rainbolt’s shocked to learn he’s inherited half of Claire Ballard’s family farm—and that he’s a father. Now Claire’s determined to break ties with the man who once left her behind. But Reece will buy her half only on one condition: she must stay in town to help with the harvest…and let him get to know his little girl.

(Affiliate links included.)

Tour Schedule

August 3rd:
August 4th:
August 5th:
August 6th:
August 7th:
August 10th:
August 11th:
August 12th:
August 13th:
August 14th:
August 15th:

Bookstagram Tour


Check out the Bookstagram Tour here, which has its own giveaway!


Other Books in the Series

Finding the Road Home
(Hearts of Oklahoma #1)
By Tina Radcliffe
Christian Contemporary Romance
Paperback & ebook, 224 Pages
February 18, 2020 by Love Inspired

Some paths need courage to follow…

Can they find their fresh startwith roadblocks around every corner?

To care for her orphaned nieces and nephews, Daisy Anderson moved to a small town for a new deputy position—but now her job could be eliminated. With potential budget cuts looming, her only hope is to work with police chief Mitch Rainbolt to save their department’s funds. But can their fight for her job lead to something neither dared wish for: a future together?

(Affiliate links included.)

And coming in December...

(Linked to an Amazon affiliate link.)

About the Author


Tina Radcliffe is the American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award-winning author of inspirational romance. She is an ACFW and Romance Writers of America Honor Roll member, and a four time ACFW Carol Award finalist. Tina is the author of fifteen inspirational romances for Harlequin HarperCollins.


Tour Giveaway


One winner will receive a Lily Queen Canvas Totebag (retail value $21.99), a $25 Amazon gift card and a print copy of READY TO TRUST (US/CAN only)

Ends August 19, 2020

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Weekly Update #378, school is beginning...


Welcome to my Weekly Update where I share what's been going on and what's coming up!

I'm linking up to The Sunday Post, hosted by Kimba @ The Caffeinated Book Reviewer.

This past week has been quite crazy, mostly due to the kids starting back to school next week. Nothing is normal for them going back. My week was filled with getting supplies, making calls and sending emails to figure out my oldest's schedule, helping my two oldest do some pretesting and then trying to keep on top of blogging and tours. We did also fit in some fun time too, which we needed to do before school. I'm really not ready for summer to be over, although I am ready for cooler weather. We hit 118 this week and it was just hot! I do have some fun books coming up... hopefully I'll be able to find time to read. 

This Week


New Books

I got three books in the mail this week, all for review:
Love and a Little White Lie by Tammy L. Gray
Six Years and a Quarter Way Through by Cassandre Brissot
The Black Kids by Christina Hammonds Reed

Last Week

Happy reading!

Read an excerpt from Teen Titans: Beast Boy by Kami Garcia & Illustrated by Gabriel Picolo with #DCComics! #TeenTitansBeastBoy #countdown @dccomics @kamigarcia @_gabrielpicolo

Teen Titans: Beast Boy
By Kami Garcia
Illustrated by Gabriel Picolo
YA Comic, Super Hero
Paperback & ebook, 192 Pages
September 1, 2020 by DC Ink

Summary

#1 New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia (Beautiful Creatures) and artist Gabriel Picolo, the creative duo behind the smash hit Teen Titans: Raven, take you on a journey of self-discovery and acceptance, while reminding us the value of true friendship--especially when life gets wild.

Garfield Logan has spent his entire life being overlooked. Even in a small town like Eden, Georgia, the 17-year-old with green streaks in his hair can't find a way to stand out--and the clock is ticking. Senior year is almost over. If Gar doesn't find a way to impress the Chosen Ones--the social elite at Bull Creek High School--he will never know what it's like to matter. Gar's best friends, Stella and Tank, don't understand why he cares what other people think. They miss their funny, pizza-loving, video game-obsessed best friend.

Then Gar accepts a wild dare out of the blue. It impresses the Chosen Ones and his social status soars. But other things are changing, too. Gar grows six inches overnight. His voice drops and, suddenly, he's stronger and faster. He's finally getting everything he wanted, but his newfound popularity comes at a price. Gar has to work harder to impress his new friends. The dares keep getting bigger and the stakes keep getting higher.

When Gar realizes the extent of his physical changes, he has to dig deep and face the truth about himself--and the people who truly matter--before his life spirals out of control.

(Affiliate links included.)

My Thoughts

I'm a big super hero fan and have enjoyed quite a few of the YA versions that have been released in recent years. I'm excited to see the Teen Titans series continue with Beast Boy, coming in exactly one month from today! I honestly am curious what this story will unveil about him with hopefully some cameos from Raven. Look for my review by release! In the meantime, pre-order your copy and enjoy the excerpt below...

*Please note that I have been sent a free copy for review, thanks for DC Comics.

Excerpt



*Edited for swearing.

Other Books in the Series

Teen Titans: Raven
By Kami Garcia
Illustrated by Gabriel Picolo
YA Comic, Super Hero
Hardcover, Paperback & ebook, 184 Pages
July 2, 2019 by DC Ink

Summary

A New York Times bestseller!

USA Today and Publishers Weekly bestseller!


When a tragic accident takes the life of 17-year-old Raven Roth's foster mom--and Raven's memory--she moves to New Orleans to recover and finish her senior year of high school.

Starting over isn't easy. Raven remembers everyday stuff like how to solve math equations and make pasta, but she can't remember her favorite song or who she was before the accident. And when impossible things start happening, Raven begins to think it might even be better not to know who she was before.

But as she grows closer to her new friends, her foster sister, Max, and Tommy Torres, a guy who accepts her for who she is now, Raven has to decide if she's ready to face what's buried in the past...and the darkness building inside her.

From #1 New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia and first-time graphic novel artist Gabriel Picolo comes this riveting tale of finding the strength to face who you are and learning to trust others--and yourself.

(Affiliate links included.)

Are you a comics or DC fan? Have you read Raven yet or will you be reading Beast Boy?