Tag Archives: Nicole Deese

Top 10 Tuesday — Hunky Heroes

31 Aug

Happy Tuesday! Today’s Top 10 topic is fictional crushes. I rarely have a crush on a character, but I can recognize a hunky hero a mile away. 😉 My definition of a hunkster may differ from yours, but generally they are brave, all in, easy on the eyes kinds of guys. They usually have a sensitive side too. As in real life, it is the heart that matters. To come up with my list I put hunky in the search bar of the blog and chose the first 10 books in which I used hunky in the review — it’s all very scientific over here! Hunky is definitely in the eye of the beholder, but you will find them in a variety of genres — romance, suspense, historical, cozy mystery — and with a variety of occupations — farmer, 19th century naval officer, author, and tech geek, to name a few. I hope you find a hunk and a book to love!

For more book crushes, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Hunky Heroes

Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese

The Christmas Swap by Melody Carlson

Flood Watch by Christy Barritt

The Forgotten Life of Evelyn Lewis by Jane Rubietta

The Liberty Bride by MaryLu Tyndall

Living Lies by Natalie Walters

No Safe Place by Sherri Shackleford

Prose And Cons by Amanda Flower

The Red Ribbon by Pepper Basham

Sweet on You by Becky Wade

Book Review: Before I Called You Mine

12 Aug

I picked up a book by a new-to-me author a couple of weeks ago. I was looking for something light and thought a contemporary romance would do the trick. Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese was a fabulous book, but I wouldn’t necessarily call it light (as in fluffy), nor is it just a romance. I loved it! And I have added another must-read author to my list.

Lauren Bailey may be a romantic at heart, but after a decade of matchmaking schemes gone wrong, there’s only one match she’s committed to now–the one that will make her a mother. Lauren is a dedicated first-grade teacher in Idaho, and her love for children has led her to the path of international adoption. To satisfy her adoption agency’s requirements, she gladly agreed to remain single for the foreseeable future; however, just as her long wait comes to an end, Lauren is blindsided by a complication she never saw coming: Joshua Avery.

Joshua may be a substitute teacher by day, but Lauren finds his passion for creating educational technology as fascinating as his antics in the classroom. Though she does her best to downplay the undeniable connection between them, his relentless pursuit of her heart puts her commitment to stay unattached to the test and causes her once-firm conviction to waver.

With an impossible decision looming, Lauren might very well find herself choosing between the two deepest desires of her heart . . . even if saying yes to one means letting go of the other.

Nicole Deese is a Carol Award winner and a RITA and INSPY Award finalist. When she’s not working on her next contemporary Christian romance novel, she can usually be found reading one by a window overlooking the inspiring beauty of the Pacific Northwest. She lives in small-town Idaho with her happily-ever-after hubby, two rambunctious sons, and princess daughter with the heart of a warrior. Find her online at http://www.nicoledeese.com.

My Impressions:

I started Before You Call Me Mine because I wanted some light reading and thought it would fit the bill. The book had been on my TBR shelf for a while, and with its pretty cover beckoning, I thought why not? Why did I wait so long! Although you could categorize this novel as a contemporary romance, it certainly is so much more. I fell in love with main character Lauren with her heart for kids and her belief God was leading her to adoption as a single mom. The story is told in Lauren’s first person voice, and it was like she was right with me telling me all about her joys and heartbreaks, and the doubts that assail us all when we are trying to follow God’s will. It didn’t hurt that she was in love with literacy either. This novel was filled with humor — a great thing to have while dealing with the rocky road of adoption. Poignant moments had me in tears, especially the revelation that comes at the end of the book. While I said this was not just a romance, it does have one of the swooniest male characters I have read. Who couldn’t resist Deese’s nerdy and hunky hero?

Loved, loved, loved this book! In fact I passed it alone to a friend, and I can’t wait for her to read it so we can discuss. Before I Called You Mine will definitely be on my best of 2021 list.

Highly Recommended.

Audience: Adults.

(Thanks to Bethany House for a complimentary copy. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

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

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 — Song Titles

10 Nov

This week’s Top Ten Tuesday challenge is a fun one — pick book titles that would make great song titles. Song titles and book titles have so much in common. They both are catchy and easy to remember and capture the essence of the book/song in one phrase. Song titles usually come from a line in the lyrics. Book titles often do the same thing — it’s fun when you come across the reference while reading. This week I went to my shelves for inspiration and found some books residing there that reference real songs for their titles, so I included some of those as well. Hope you find a book to love.

For more Top Ten Tuesday fun, visit That Artsy Reader Girl.

 

 

Top Book Titles That Should (or are) Song Titles

 

Books with songs as titles:

Cold As Ice by M. K. Gilroy

Stay with Me by Becky Wade

Suspicious Minds by Christy Barritt

You’re The One That I Want by Susan May Warren

 

 

Books that would make great song titles:

Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese

The Key to Love by Betsy St. Amant

More Than We Remember by Christina Suzann Nelson

 

No Ocean Too Wide by Carrie Turansky

To Be Where You Are by Jan Karon

Until I Found You by Victoria Bylin 

 

 

Top 10 Tuesday — Super Long Titles

13 Oct

So how long is long for a book title? 5 words? 7? More? I headed to my TBR shelves to find those books that grabbed me with their intriguingly or amusingly long titles for this week’s Top 10 Tuesday. Have you read any of these? I’d love to know your thoughts.

For more super long book titles, go to That Artsy Reader Girl.

Super Long Book Titles

Five

The Sound of Falling Leaves by Lisa Carter

Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese

Six

Dearest Dorothy, If Not Now, When? by Charlene Baumbich

To Say Nothing of The Dog by Connie Willis

Seven

Miss Hazel And The Rosa Parks League by Jonathan Odell

Jane And The Twelve Days of Christmas by Stephanie Barron

Eight

Belinda Blake And The Birds of A Feather by Heather Day Gilbert

The Sweetness At The Bottom of The Pie by Alan Bradley

First Line Friday — Before I Called You Mine

19 Jun

Happy Friday everyone! Is contemporary romance your go-to genre for beach or pool reads? Then I think I have a book just for you! I haven’t read Before I Called You Mine by Nicole Deese yet, but this novel promises a get-lost-in-a-book good time. I love the premise, and that first line? Brilliant. Let me know if you have read this one yet, and why I should move it up to the top of the TBR.

 

If Obsessive Email Checking Disorder were a disease, I was likely already in the final stages: trigger thumb, mindless refreshing, aimless scrolling, and, of course, an inability to focus on anything else in the world.

 

 

Lauren Bailey may be a romantic at heart, but after a decade of matchmaking schemes gone wrong, there’s only one match she’s committed to now–the one that will make her a mother. Lauren is a dedicated first-grade teacher in Idaho, and her love for children has led her to the path of international adoption. To satisfy her adoption agency’s requirements, she gladly agreed to remain single for the foreseeable future; however, just as her long wait comes to an end, Lauren is blindsided by a complication she never saw coming: Joshua Avery.

Joshua may be a substitute teacher by day, but Lauren finds his passion for creating educational technology as fascinating as his antics in the classroom. Though she does her best to downplay the undeniable connection between them, his relentless pursuit of her heart puts her commitment to stay unattached to the test and causes her once-firm conviction to waver.

With an impossible decision looming, Lauren might very well find herself choosing between the two deepest desires of her heart . . . even if saying yes to one means letting go of the other.

Nicole Deese is a Carol Award winner and a RITA and INSPY Award finalist. When she’s not working on her next contemporary Christian romance novel, she can usually be found reading one by a window overlooking the inspiring beauty of the Pacific Northwest. She lives in small-town Idaho with her happily-ever-after hubby, two rambunctious sons, and princess daughter with the heart of a warrior. Find her online at http://www.nicoledeese.com.

 

For more fabulous first line fun, head over to Hoarding Books.

 

2018 Inspy Shortlists!

2 May

The Inspy Awards, the blogger-based awards program for inspirational books, has announced their 2018 shortlists. Whew! What a great bunch of books! Now it’s in the judges hands, and what a tough job they have. Congrats to all the authors! For more info, check out inspy.com.

 

Contemporary Romance/Romantic Suspense

A New Shade of Summer (Waterfall Press) by Nicole Deese

Then There Was You (Bellbird Press) by Kara Isaac

Jane of Austin (Waterbrook) by Hillary Manton Lodge

True to You (Bethany House) by Becky Wade

Just Look Up (Tyndale) by Courtney Walsh

 

Debut Fiction

 Still Waters (Firefly Southern Fiction) by Lindsey P. Brackett

Freedom’s Ring (Tyndale) by Heidi Chiavaroli

Count Me In (I21 Publishing House) by Mikal Dawn

Lady Jayne Disappears (Revell) by Joanna Davidson Politano

Stars in the Grass (Shiloh Run Press) by Ann Marie Stewart

 

General Fiction

Perennials (Thomas Nelson) by Julie Cantrell

A Trail of Crumbs: A Novel of the Great Depression (Kregel) by Susie Finkbeiner

Life After (Waterbrook) by Katie Ganshert

The Space Between Words (Thomas Nelson) by Michele Phoenix

The Austen Escape (Thomas Nelson) by Katherine Reay

 

Historical Romance

A Note Yet Unsung (Bethany House) by Tamera Alexander

The Road to Paradise (Waterbrook) by Karen Barnett

Many Sparrows (Waterbrook) by Lori Benton

A Lady in Disguise (Howard) by Sandra Byrd

A Moonbow Night (Revell) by Laura Frantz

 

Literature for Young Adults

The Returning (Tyndale) by Rachelle Dekker

Unraveling (Thomas Nelson) by Sara Ella

For Love and Honor (Zondervan) by Jody Hedlund

The Lost Girl of Astor Street (Blink) by Stephanie Morrill

The Evaporation of Sofi Snow (Thomas Nelson) by Mary Weber

 

Mystery/Thriller

The Enoch Effect (Waterfall Press) by Rick Acker

Death at Thorburn Hall (Bethany House) by Julianna Deering

Crown of Souls (Bethany House) by Ronie Kendig

A Portrait of Vengeance (Thomas Nelson) by Carrie Stuart Parks

Imperfect Justice (Thomas Nelson) by Cara Putman

 

Speculative Fiction

Raging Storm (Harvest House) by Vannetta Chapman

The Divide (Tyndale) by Jolina Petersheim

The Beast of Talesend (Indie) by Kyle Robert Schultz

The Girl Who Could See (Indie) by Kara Swanson

King’s Blood (Bethany House) by Jill Williamson

 

2017 Carol Award Winners

24 Sep

Congratulations to the 2017 Carol Award winners. Presented by The American Christian Fiction Writers, the Carol Awards are given in recognition of outstanding fiction in 10 genres.

 

Contemporary

The Feathered Bone by Julie Cantrell, HarperCollins Christian Publishing (Thomas Nelson and Zondervan), editor Amanda Bostic

 

Historical

Like a River from Its Course by Kelli Stuart, Kregel Publications, editors Dawn Jackson and Janyre Tromp

 

Historical Romance

The Lady and the Lionheart by Joanne Bischof, ACFW QIP (Qualified Independently Published), editors Denise Harmer and Kara Swanson

 

Mystery/Suspense/Thriller

When Death Draws Near by Carrie Stuart Parks, HarperCollins Christian Publishing (Thomas Nelson and Zondervan), editors Amanda Bostic and Natalie Hanneman

 

Novella

The Doctor’s Woman (The Courageous Brides Collection) by Michelle Griep, Barbour Publishing, editor Becky Germany

 

Romance

A Season to Love by Nicole Deese, Waterfall Press, editors Amy Hosford and Kristin Mehus-Roe

 

Romantic Suspense

Always Watching (Elite Guardians) by Lynette Eason, Revell – A Division of Baker Publishing, editor Andrea Doering

 

Short Novel

Restoring Christmas by Cynthia Ruchti, Worthy Inspired, editors Pamela Clements and Jamie Chavez

 

Speculative

The Long Journey to Jake Palmer by James L. Rubart, HarperCollins Christian Publishing (Thomas Nelson and Zondervan), editors Amanda Bostic and Erin Healy

 

Debut

You’re the Cream in My Coffee by Jennifer Lamont Leo, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, editor Kathryn Davis