Tag Archives: Elizabeth Musser

2021 Carol Award Winners!

11 Sep

Congratulations to the talented authors who are this year’s winners of the ACFW Carol Award. I hope your TBR wishlist just got longer! 😉

2021 Carol Award Winners

Contemporary

The Promised Land by Elizabeth Musser; Bethany House (Baker) Publishing; Editor: L. B. Norton

Historical

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green; Bethany House (Baker) Publishing; Editors: Dave Horton and Rochelle Gloege

Historical Romance

Like Flames in the Night by Connilyn Cossette; Bethany House (Baker) Publishing; Editors: Raela Schoenherr and Jennifer Veilleux

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

Dead End by Nancy Mehl; Bethany House (Baker) Publishing; Editors: Raela Schoenherr and Jean Bloom

Novella

Far as the Curse is Found (from The Joy to the World Collection) by Amanda Barratt; Kregel Publications; Editors: Janyre Tromp and Dori De Vries Harrell

Romance

Love and A Little White Lie by Tammy L. Gray; Bethany House (Baker) Publishing; Editor: Raela Schoenherr

Romantic Suspense

Lost Down Deep by Sara Davison; ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published); Editors: Ines Jimenez and Deb Elkink

Short Novel

The Christmas Bargain by Lisa Carter; Love Inspired (Harlequin); Editor: Melissa Endlich

Speculative

Stealing Embers by Julie Hall; ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published); Editors: Rebecca Heyman and Janelle Leonard

Young Adult

Mortal Sight by Sandra Fernandez Rhoads; Enclave Publishing; Editors: Steve Laube and Lisa Laube

Debut Author

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green; Bethany House (Baker) Publishing; Editors: Dave Horton and Rochelle Gloege

2021 Carol Award Finalists

29 Jun

Congratulations to all the wonderful authors who are finalists in the 2021 Carol Awards presented by the ACFW. Now you know what to read this summer! 😉

Contemporary

The Promised Land by Elizabeth Musser

If For Any Reason by Courtney Walsh

On a Coastal Breeze by Suzanne Woods Fisher

Historical

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green

In High Cotton by Ane Mulligan

The Right Kind of Fool by Sarah Loudin Thomas


Historical Romance

Daughter of Rome by Tessa Afshar

Like Flames in the Night by Connilyn Cossette

The Runaway Bride by Jody Hedlund


Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

Dead End by Nancy Mehl

Relative Silence by Carrie Stuart Parks

A Baby’s Right to Choose by David L. Winters


Novella

Far as the Curse is Found, from the collection Joy to the World: A Regency Christmas Collection
by Amanda Barratt

Christmas in Galway, in the collection Christmas Lights and Romance by Elizabeth Ludwig

A New Hope for Christmas by Erin Stevenson


Romance

Love and a Little White Lie by Tammy L. Gray

Starfish Pier by Irene Hannon

Carolina Breeze by Denise Hunter


Romantic Suspense

Lost Down Deep by Sara Davison

Point of Danger by Irene Hannon

Airborne by DiAnn Mills


Short Novel

The Christmas Bargain by Lisa Carter

Killer Insight by Virginia Vaughan

Texas Holiday Hideout by Virginia Vaughan


Speculative

Cry of the Raven (Book 3, The Ravenwood Saga) by Morgan L. Busse

Stealing Embers by Julie Hall

The Vault Between Spaces by Chawna Schroeder

Young Adult

Victoria Grace the Jerkface by S.E. Clancy

The Story Hunter by Lindsay A. Franklin

Mortal Sight by Sandra Fernandez Rhoads


Debut

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green

The Edge of Everywhen by A.S. Mackey

Mortal Sight by Sandra Fernandez Rhoads


Top 10 Tuesday — Favorite Audiobooks

1 Jun

Over the weekend a friend asked for audiobook recommendations. As a big fan, I had a few recommendations — I had to stop myself! 😉 Since this week’s Top 10 Tuesday is a Freebie, I thought I would share some of my favorite audiobooks. The stories are great and the readers are excellent, capturing just the right pacing and accents needed to make the experience enjoyable. Whether you have a road trip planned or need something to help while away the hours next to the pool or beach, or if you need something to help get thought an exercise routine or boring chores, all on my list will fit the bill.

Do you like listening to audiobooks?

For more Top 10 Tuesday fun, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Ten of My Favorite Audiobooks

A Bridge Across The Ocean by Susan Meissner

The Last Year of The War by Susan Meissner

Mountain Laurel by Lori Benton

The Number of Love by Roseanna White

Perennials by Julie Cantrell

State of Lies by Siri Mitchell

Stories That Bind Us by Susie Finkbeiner

The Summer House by Lauren K. Denton

An Uncommon Woman by Laura Frantz

When I Close My Eyes by Elizabeth Musser

Top 10 Tuesday — Incomplete Sentences/Complete Thoughts

18 May

Today’s Top 10 Tuesday challenge is to list books with titles that are complete sentences. Looking at my shelves I didn’t find any, but I did find books with titles that convey a complete thought. With all our social media shorthand, I thought they would fit into today’s topic pretty well. The genres of these books vary, so there is something for everyone. I hope you find a title to love!

For more Top 10 Tuesday fun, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Titles with A Complete Thought

Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese

The Key to Everything by Valerie Fraser Luesse

Miracle in A Dry Season by Sarah Loudin Thomas

More Than We Remember by Christina Suzann Nelson

Somewhere Safe with Somebody Good by Jan Karon

Stories That Bind Us by Susie Finkbeiner

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green

Until I Found You by Victoria Bylin

Wait for Me by Susan May Warren

When I Close My Eyes by Elizabeth Musser

What I’m Reading — Unfamiliar Settings

24 Mar

I have been reading a totally engrossing novel. While I love the story and the characters, the setting is what has fueled my imagination. A Tapestry of Light is Kimberly Duffy‘s sophomore novel. Her debut, A Mosaic of Wings, was partially set in India in the late 1880s. That book opened a new world for me, but it is with her second book that I can immerse myself in the sights, sounds, and even smells of historic India. The main character is Anglo-Indian or as termed in the past, Eurasian. Her viewpoint combined with the lushly detailed narrative has enchanted me. That brings me to my question for discussion:

Do you often read novels set in unfamiliar locations?

I am a big fan of learning something new while reading. That does not often translate into settings I would term unfamiliar — a place that is vastly different from what I encounter in day to day life with differing customs, foods, dress, etc. I have read a few books that would fit that description, but most were historical fiction. Here are a few:

Set in the Holy Land, the island of Nevis, and Australia, respectively, they featured a time and place I was unfamiliar with. I think that learning about the history of a place helps me understand its modern-day world. A Tapestry of Light is a great view into India under British rule and gives some insight into what it is today.

What do you like about an unfamiliar setting?

In researching this topic, I found most of the contemporary books I have read feature missions, which is good. But I think I would like some that feature more of the day to day life of those who are citizens of the locales. Here are a few contemporary books that have unfamiliar settings. Of the three I have featured, only Two Destinies does not have a missions connection.

Let me know what you think. And I’d love some book recommendations!

Top 10 Tuesday — Characters And Their Jobs

2 Mar

This week’s Top 10 Tuesday features characters with jobs we would like to have. I worked as my husband’s bookkeeper for almost 25 years as I helped him grow his business. It was the right choice for us and helped us achieve our goals. But did I regret leaving upon my retirement a year and a half ago? Uh, no. 😉 While my first year of retirement was a bit different than I imagined, I am enjoying more flexibility and freedom. Not having to plan time off around biweekly payroll is great! So, no, I don’t envy any character’s job!

For a bit of a twist on today’s challenge, I am featuring characters whose jobs play an integral part in their story. They wouldn’t be where they are without the jobs they have. All are recent reads.

For more on character jobs, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

Top Character Jobs

 

Amara Alvarez — homicide detective

 

Josephine Bourdillon — fiction author

 

Caroline Bragg — corporate attorney

 

Evelyn Brand — international journalist

 

Margot De Wilde — codebreaker

 

Madison James — U.S. Marshall

 

Layla Karam — CIA analyst

 

Caitlyn Lindsey — research scientist

 

Alice Grace Ripley — librarian

 

Jeremy Winter — FBI agent

Audiobook Mini-Review: When I Close My Eyes

1 Feb

I was delighted to find one of my favorite authors on my library’s digital site. When I Close My Eyes by Elizabeth Musser has been on my radar since it was released a year or so ago. Libby had it available in audiobook form, and I jumped at borrowing it. It is an excellent read. It definitely will make my best of 2021 list!

Could she ever share the secret of The Awful Year? 

There is one story that novelist Josephine Bourdillon shirked from writing. And now she may never have a chance. Trapped in her memories, she lies in a coma. 

The man who put her there is just as paralyzed. Former soldier Henry Hughes failed to complete the kill. What’s more: he never received full payment – funds that would ensure surgery for his son. 

As detectives investigate disturbing fan letters, a young but not-so-naive Paige Bourdillon turns to her mother’s turbulent past for answers. Could The Awful Year be worse than the one they’re living now? 

Set against the flaming hills of North Carolina and the peaceful shores of the Mediterranean Sea, When I Close My Eyes tells the story of two families struggling with dysfunction and finding that love is stronger than death.

Elizabeth Musser writes ‘entertainment with a soul’ from her writing chalet—tool shed—outside Lyon, France. Elizabeth’s highly acclaimed, best-selling novel, The Swan House, was named one of Amazon’s Top Christian Books of the Year and one of Georgia’s Top Ten Novels of the Past 100 Years (Georgia Backroads). Two Destinies, the final novel in The Secrets of the Cross trilogy, was a finalist for the 2013 Christy Award. The Long Highway Home was a finalist for the Carol Awards. All of Elizabeth’s novels have been translated into multiple languages and have been international best-sellers.

Find more about Elizabeth’s novels at www.elizabethmusser.com and on Facebook, Twitter, and her blog

 

My Impressions:

An audiobook is great when you need something for a road trip or morning walks, especially if it is from a favorite author, has a story that grabs you from the beginning, and has narrators that bring life to the characters. I got all of that while listening to When I Close My Eyes by Elizabeth Musser. This novel seemed to be a bit of a departure for Musser. Set in modern-day Asheville, but including glimpses of one character’s past life, it is a study in grace and forgiveness. Three narrators gave voice to Paige, Josephine, and Henry — all excellent! Josephine, a best-selling author is shot by Henry (a man struggling with family pressures and PTSD), and Paige, Josephine’s daughter, is left to make sense of what is happening. I loved how Musser showed the impact of the initial murder attempt and the winding road to wholeness — although in ways this reader was not expecting. Mental illness in a variety of manifestations is explored thoughtfully and sensitively. I began listening in one hour intervals, but when I found myself under the weather, the book kept my mind engaged while resting. (And good news — all the tests came back negative, if you know what I mean 😉 .)

While I loved the audiobook experience, When I Close My Eyes is a book to contemplate and savor, so you may find the physical copy more to your liking. Either way it is a highly recommended read!

Highly Recommended.

Audience: Adults.

(I borrowed the audiobook from my local library through Libby. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Top 10 Tuesday — Books I Meant to Read in 2020

19 Jan

2020 was going to be the year of Beckie! For you Seinfeld fans, you know what I mean 😉 . I retired from my job (doing my husband’s books) late 2019 and only had some tax tasks to take care of in January. My first grandchild was born in December 2019. And I had all of the time in the world to travel, visit my family, and read, read, read! Boy, was I in for a big disappointment! The first two things on my agenda were thwarted by breast cancer and, of course, Covid. The third? You would think that not being able to go anywhere would have created great reading opportunities. For me, not so much. I ended up reading a lot less than in past years.

Did you read less or more last year?

Last year has set this year’s bar very low. I have few expectations of 2021. Plans are held loosely. It’s only January, and I have already had to cancel one trip to see my grand baby. 🙁  My Goodreads Reading Goal is set low as well. But there are many unread books staring at me from my shelves. I am determined that while the number of books may be low, the quality will be high. Included in books I want to read are those I missed last year, hence today’s Top 10 Tuesday list. All of these books deserve to be read — here’s hoping I do in 2021. For more books bloggers didn’t get to, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

What books did you not get to last year?

 

 

Top Books I Meant to Read in 2020

 

Acceptable Risk by Lynette Eason

Active Defense by Lynette Eason

Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese

 

The Key to Love by Betsy  St. Amant

More Than We Remember by Christina Suzann Nelson

Point of Danger by Irene Hannon

The Promised Land by Elizabeth Musser

 

The Sowing Season by Katie Powner

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Lynn Green

The White Rose Resists by Amanda Barratt

 

Which book should I read first?

 

 

Top 10 Tuesday — Autumn Covers

6 Oct

It’s not really feeling fall-is here in the Sunny South. Oh we did have a tease of cooler temperatures last week, but this week we are back in the mid-80s, and it looks like another tropical system is on its way. Ugh! But I can still snuggle in with autumn-y books even if I can only capture brisk breezes with an air conditioner and a ceiling fan! 😉

Along with other bloggers I am sharing some book covers that declare those autumn vibes. The colors just say fall for me. My list includes books that I am currently reading and those that are on my TBR shelf or wishlists. They span a number of genres, so there’s something for everyone.

For more great covers, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Autumn-Vibes Book Covers

Dreams Rekindled by Amanda Cabot

Leaving Oxford by Janet Ferguson

Mountain Laurel by Lori Benton

Obsession by Patricia Bradley

The Promised Land by Elizabeth Musser

Protecting Tanner Hollow by Lynette Eason

The Sowing Season by Katie Powner

Things We Didn’t Say by Amy Green

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Top 10 Tuesday — Most Read Authors

7 Jul

The week’s Top 10 Tuesday prompt is authors I have read the most books by. I am tweaking a bit with a list of the authors my book club loves — the ones we always read whenever they have a new book release. I have included two of my favorites from each author. I hope you find one to love from our list.

For more favorite author recommendations, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

Top Book Club Favorite Authors

 

Terri Blackstock

 

Elizabeth Musser

 

Francine Rivers

 

Dan Walsh

 

Robert Whitlow

 

Cindy Woodsmall

 

 

Who is your favorite author?