Clear As Ice by Penelope Marzec

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CLEAR AS ICE by Penelope Marzec

When Ethan’s prayers for his mother’s life go unanswered, he abandons his faith, tossing it out with his mother’s Christmas ornaments. The loss of his hope leaves him empty and he begins to shy away from relationships, but when his dog Rufus, a rescue from a shelter, develops a fondness for a woman skating on the frozen lake behind his house, he’s annoyed. Not only does he resent her using his pond, he doesn’t understand her fear of dogs.

Haylie, once an Olympic figure skater, is afraid of more than just Ethan’s dog. She lives in constant fear due to threats from a stalker, but one day Ethan’s dog chases the danger away, so Haylie decides to try to lose her fear of dogs…But then the stalker’s plans expand to include revenge toward Ethan as well. If they are to remain safe and live to see a happily-ever-after, Haylie and Ethan must put aside differences and learn to trust each other. This Christmas season promises to be the most challenging and the most meaningful of their lives.

 

Now that you read a bit about the book, the question becomes–Who is Penelope Marzec? Let’s find out.

The author of CLEAR AS ICE, Penelope Marzec, grew up along the Jersey shore. She started reading romances at a young age and fell hopelessly in love with happy endings. Two of her inspirational romances won EPIC’s eBook Award and another was a finalist in that contest. Her paranormal, Irons in the Fire, was a nominee for a Romantic Times Reviewers Choice award. Visit her website at http://www.penelopemarzec.com for more information.

Penelope’s favorite Christmas tradition is setting up the Nativity scene. When she was young, her family didn’t own a Nativity scene. Money was tight, since Penelope was one of four children, and so while her family always set up a Christmas tree and scraped together enough for some gifts, there never was a Nativity set.

When Penelope married, more responsibilities came along–like buying a house and having children. She wanted her very young daughters to understand the true meaning of Christmas. She knew a Nativity set would be helpful in that undertaking. While there were many lovely Nativity sets, most of them were very easy to break.

Then she found a set of large, plastic figurines. While the set did not have the delicate beauty of those more expensive sets, she knew it would stand up to the inquisitive hands of toddlers. Unfortunately, it didn’t come with a stable.

Penelope set about looking for housing for the Holy Family. She found it at a Christmas bazaar in a nearby church. Handmade by a local artisan, it just happened to be the right size.

The figurines stood the test of time with children who once decided to make our set a “living” Nativity scene by placing the guinea pigs inside and added Timothy hay so they would stay there. It didn’t work out well. The guinea pigs liked the hay but the figurines got in their way.

The figurines aged over time. Every now and then, they need a dab of paint when the original paint flakes off. After Thanksgiving, Penelope sets up the Nativity scene each year, adding a bit of dried grass since hay is far too large in scale. Though Penelope could buy a more fanciful set, she loves this one and it has become a wonderful tradition in the family.

Thanks, Penelope, for spending some time with my readers today.

GOD BLESS & GOOD READING!

 

BOOK REVIEW: Crazy Creek Christmas by Lisa J. Lickel

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I love Christmas! For many different reasons but one reason is because of all the great Christmas novellas that my publisher (Pelican Book Group) releases during their Christmas Extravaganza. This year is no exception. Today, I’m featuring Crazy Creek Christmas by Lisa J. Lickel.

Lisa Lickel is a Wisconsin author who loves books and dragons, she writes inspiring fiction. Besides writing inspiring fiction, she also writes short stories, feature articles, and radio theater, and loves to encourage new authors through mentoring, speaking, and leading workshops. She is an avid book reviewer and blogger, and a freelance editor. Find more at LisaLickel.com.

MY BOOK REVIEW:

I love reading Lisa’s books.

They always have great characters along with an interesting plot. This one is no exception. This is not your everyday ho-hum romance. First of all, it’s set in modern-day Wyoming on the Rocking J Ranch. I mean really–how cool is that? Mountains and cowboys and Christmas!

Leah needs a job and Rocking J Ranch needs a cook. It sounds like the perfect situation….until she arrives. Things are a little different than she expected. OK, a lot different and not in a good way. It seems that not everyone’s happy she’s there. But that’s OK with her, she’s tough. Being raised in foster homes will do that. And she really needs this job.

Noel is the absent owner of the ranch but shows up with the intention of sharing his plan to sell the ranch to a development group. And that means he’s not popular with anyone, including Leah.

I’m not going to give away the plot but I will tell you that there’s lots of twists and turns. That’s the great thing about reading Lisa J. Lickel’s books. You just never know what’s going to happen. Only that something will happen. Definitely put this book on your holiday reading list.

 

 

Crazy Creek Christmas By Lisa J Lickel

 

AMAZON LINK

Crazy Creek, Wyoming saves Leah Hanes’s life. Running on fumes and bald tires, she thanks heaven for Cookie and Jeanette Wimmer who send her to the Rocking J Ranch as a winter cook. Leah arrives to discover the ranch and the people need more than a cook.

Noel Johansen, heir of the Rocking J, happily left for the big city years ago. When he loses his family in a terrible accident, the best thing for everyone is to sell the place, ditch the memories, and move on. But his brother-in-law has other plans, and the beautiful new cook they’ve hired for the season threatens Noel’s desire to remain detached.

The ranch represents Noel’s future and selling it becomes more important than ever when one more tragedy leaves him with nothing. But memories can’t be bought and sold, nor can a broken conscience heal itself. Home, heart, and future are irrevocably tied in Crazy Creek.

 

Enjoy an Excerpt from CRAZY CREEK CHRISTMAS:

 

Noel pushed through the passage into his mother’s dining area.

“Did that woman get here yet? I don’t want to have to haul someone’s…”

It was Gil’s voice Noel heard, but definitely not Gil’s face across the big table. Noel amended his language and raised his arms to brace himself against the sides of the doorway.

“Ah…vehicle…out of the ditch.”

Cupcake was a liar.

The vision before him was not some hardened woman used to ranch life and the lonely, harsh conditions of a Wyoming winter.

Jeanette and Cupcake sent a woman several years younger than himself, younger even than his sister. How could she have experience cooking? Noel stared. She was very pretty in a pinched, inexperienced way, with dark blonde hair pulled back from her face in a loose ponytail. She seemed startled, maybe even confused. The opposite of Carolyn in every way.

The folder with the contract was on the table. To one side, Marty rested on the table. To the girl’s other side, Gil huddled in his wheelchair. He’d obviously slid downhill since coming home from rehab last month. It didn’t look as if he’d done anything to keep himself or the place up in the weeks since Noel brought him home. Marty had been sick, Noel knew, but a visiting nurse was supposed to check in on them.

Mom would never have allowed this. Jeanette should have known better. What had she been thinking? The situation had clearly gotten out of control.

“I wasn’t expecting you,” Gil said.

“Clearly.” Noel snapped himself upright and walked in. “What’s going on? The place looks like it’s falling apart. I only left a few weeks ago.”

Gil gave a sideways eye-roll toward the young lady. “What are you doing here?”

“Jeanette and Cupcake sent a message.” Noel hedged. “Where’s the nurse?”

“After the first two weeks I told her she didn’t have to come back,” Gil said.

The young lady turned her face from their 1 exchange. Noel set his hands on his hips. “Excuse me. You’re…you’re Lady…Laney…La-something?”

The woman raised a brow at Gil, who had turned red.

“This is Leah Hanes. Leah, meet my brother-in-law.”

Noel put his hands on the table and leaned 8 forward, trying to get a look at the contract. Gil pushed the papers inside the folder and closed it. “Your car wasn’t outside,” Noel said. “As you can see, the situation isn’t going to work out. Thank you for coming.”

“I signed a contract, Mr…Mr. Brother-in-law.” Leah’s voice was not that of a young, inexperienced or nervous girl.

It was Noel’s turn to raise his brow.

Marty finally lifted his head, snuffled, and stared Noel straight on. “She got nowhere else to go. You can’t kick a body out when winter’s comin’.”

 

And there you have it! This is a fun read to get you in the mood for Christmas. Thanks,  Lisa, for being my guest today.

 

God Bless & Good Reading!

 

 

 

Tweets

 

 

 

 

Sugar Cookies and Street Lamps by Susan M. Baganz

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Susan M. Baganz is living her own happily-ever-after with her husband Benjamin. She chases after two Hobbits, and is a native of Wisconsin. Susan writes adventurous historical and contemporary romances with a biblical world-view.  Susan speaks, teaches, and encourages others to follow God in being all He has created them to be. With her seminary degree in counseling psychology, a background in the field of mental health, and years serving in church ministry, she understands the complexities and pain of life as well as its craziness. Her favorite pastimes are lazy…spending time with her husband, snuggling with her dog while reading a good book, or sitting with a friend chatting over a cup of spiced chai latte.
You can learn more by following her blog http://www.susanbaganz.com, her Twitter feed @susanbaganz or her fan page, http://www.facebook.com/susanmbaganz.

Noelle Starr hates her name and her Christmas Eve birthday. This year, as she works as an event coordinator for a huge Christmas gala, she is dealing with a handsome corporate assistant with big plans and effusive faith. Could she possibly make it through this season with her sanity intact?

Rudolph (Rudy) Cameron was named for his great-grandfather and grew up being teased for his unfortunate penchant for looking rosy-cheeked and nosed in the cold Wisconsin winters. That never did much to dampen his thrill of the season celebrating the birth of Christ. This year a certain woman was sweetening the process except she hates this time of year! Now if he could only get her to look past her own nose to see the real reason for the season.

 

Thanks, Susan, for stopping by. I hope you have a merry, merry Christmas.

GOD BLESS & GOOD READING!

All I Want for Christmas is Johnny Rocker Dead!

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All I Want for Christmas is Johnny Rocker Dead–how’s that for a great title for my latest Christmas novella. And if that wasn’t enough, look at the great cover my publisher created!

 

AMAZON BUY LINK

 

Between the title and the cover, it should tell readers one thing. This is going to be a fun story! And that’s exactly what it is.

Every year my publisher puts on a Christmas Extravaganza! I love that word—extravaganza. It’s fun to say. Anyway…what’s a Christmas Extravaganza? My publisher releases a group of novellas with a Christmas theme and for a certain time they’re only 99 cents! How’s that for an extravaganza?

Murder, Mayhem & Christmas? Really? On the surface, it may seem that murder and mayhem doesn’t necessarily go with Christmas, but I love weaving a Christmas story in with suspense and romance. I have several other Christmas stories available—The Christmas Stalking; The Christmas Angel Thief; No Home for the Holidays; and A Christmas Stolen.

Johnny Rocker considers himself a rock and roll god and therefore, he doesn’t need God. But as with all of us, God has a way of getting our attention when he wants it.

Maddie Cotton’s plan for Christmas are simple. She’s quitting her bodyguard job because it’s time for a change in her life. But one simple word changes those plans—Nineveh.

So exactly how does God get Johnny Rocker’s attention and what does Nineveh have to do with it? You’ll have to read the book to find out.I won’t tell you the plot but I will tell you that story is about how much God loves each of us—no matter what we’ve done.

And isn’t that what Christmas is really all about?

All I Want for Christmas is Johnny Rocker Dead releases on November 27th, but you can preorder it right now.

AMAZON BUY LINK

Merry Christmas to all!

 

 

 

And the Winners are…

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The grand prize winner of the $25 Amazon gift card is… Patricia Brooks!

The five winners for their choice of one of my ebooks are…

J.D. W

Natalya L.

Sonja

Pamela F.

Janelle.

Winners, please respond by using the contact form below so I have your correct address. If you don’t respond using the contact form, I can’t send you your prize. If you won a book, please go to Amazon to see what’s available. You may pick any ebook except The Sisters by Choice trilogy.

Congratulations to everyone who won!

God Bless & Good Reading!

 

TRAPPED-Baby Steps

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As you know, TRAPPED is my latest romantic suspense novel—heavy on the suspense but enough romance to add to the enjoyment. Being Christian Fiction,  there’s also a spiritual message hidden in the pages of the story as well, and this one is no exception.

Angelina Matthews had the perfect life until the day she’s kidnapped and trapped in a basement with a mad man. Even though she’s rescued, she remains trapped by the memories she can’t forget. That’s true for so many of us. Even after the “bad situation” whatever that may be is resolved, we get stuck and can’t seem to move forward with our lives.

Instead, we’re angry and bitter or maybe sad and fearful or most likely a combination of all of those negative emotions.

In the story, her rescuer discovers that Angelina is indeed still trapped by her horrible experience. He’s had his own share of horrible as a Chicago policeman. Because of that, he reaches out to help Angeling.

One of the mantras in the story is “baby steps.” So often we think we have to go from a sitting position to a full-out run or we are a failure. It’s not true. Each baby step, we take will move us toward our ultimate goal–no matter what it is. It’s not important how fast we start but that we start. As the turtle and the hare found out–slow and steady wins the race!

One example from my own life is my weight loss journey. It took me a long, long time to lose 60 pounds. I’m still holding at the 50 pound mark. It wasn’t easy! Some weeks, I would only see a miniscule loss even though I followed the plan perfectly. But each of those miniscule losses eventually led to a pound and another pound and another

Each baby step we take toward our goal is a win. Every win brings us closer to our ultimate victory!

But TRAPPED isn’t a self-help book, it’s a suspense novel. That means there’s lots of twists and turns that will keep you guessing who the bad guy is until the very end!

Here’s the AMAZON LINK.

To celebrate the release of TRAPPED, I’m having a giveaway! Actually two different giveaways.

One lucky winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card as well as a choice of one of my books (e-book only) through CelebrateLit. Click Here to enter that giveaway.  https://promosimple.com/ps/e958/trapped-celebration-tour-giveaway

I’m also having a giveaway here on my own blog.  One person will win another $25 Amazon gift card and five lucky winners will win their choice of one of my e-books . To be entered all you need to do is leave a comment under any of the TRAPPED posts. Don’t know what to say as a comment, how about we do something fun–ask me a question and I’ll answer it or tell you it’s none of your business–just kidding–I hope!

GOD BLESS & GOOD READING!

TRAPPED–The Heroine

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We’ve already talked about the hero of TRAPPED so it’s only fair to talk about the heroine. Angelina is rich, famous, and beautiful. Her life is all about her life because after all she is rich, famous, and beautiful. It’s not giving away the plot to tell you that the story starts with her trapped and kidnapped in a basement. She has plenty of time to reflect on her life choices and how they contributed to her being trapped in that basement. She cries out to God for help–as many of us do in difficult circumstances.

Help comes in the form of our hero–Nate Goodman.

Now the question becomes was Angelina sincere as she called out to God. Will she keep her promises to God? Or will she go back to her own selfish lifestyle? Only time will tell!

Here’s the AMAZON LINK.

To celebrate the release of TRAPPED, I’m having a giveaway! Actually two different giveaways.

One lucky winner will receive a $25 Amazon Gift Card as well as a choice of one of my books (e-book only) through CelebrateLit. Click Here to enter that giveaway.  https://promosimple.com/ps/e958/trapped-celebration-tour-giveaway

I’m also having a giveaway here on my own blog.  One person will win another $25 Amazon gift card and five lucky winners will win their choice of one of my e-books . To be entered all you need to do is leave a comment under any of the TRAPPED posts. Don’t know what to say as a comment, how about we do something fun–ask me a question and I’ll answer it or tell you it’s none of your business–just kidding–I hope!

GOD BLESS & GOOD READING!