Tag Archives: Sandra Byrd

If You Liked . . . Heirlooms

31 Mar

I really liked Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd. This women’s fiction has well-developed characters in two time periods with strong family and friendship themes. If you liked it too, here are a few more reading recommendations I think you will enjoy.

The Scarlet Thread by Francine Rivers

From the New York Times bestselling author of Redeeming Love and The Masterpiece comes the powerful story of two women, centuries apart, who are joined through a tattered journal as they contend with God, husbands, and even themselves.

Sierra Madrid’s life has just been turned upside down when she discovers the handcrafted quilt and journal of her ancestor Mary Kathryn McMurray, a young woman who was uprooted from her home only to endure harsh conditions on the Oregon Trail.

Though the women are separated by time and circumstance, Sierra discovers that many of the issues they face are remarkably similar . . . and uncovering Mary Kathryn’s story may help her write the next chapter of hers.

Stories That Bind Us by Susie Finkbeiner

Betty Sweet never expected to be a widow at 40. With so much life still in front of her, she tries to figure out what’s next. She couldn’t have imagined what God had in mind. When her estranged sister is committed to a sanitarium, Betty finds herself taking on the care of a 5-year-old nephew she never knew she had.

In 1960s LaFontaine, Michigan, they make an odd pair. Betty with her pink button nose and bouffant hair. Hugo with his light brown skin and large brown eyes. But more powerful than what makes them different is what they share: the heartache of an empty space in their lives. Slowly, they will learn to trust one another as they discover common ground and healing through the magic of storytelling.

Award-winning author Susie Finkbeiner offers fans a novel that invites us to rediscover the power of story to open the doors of our hearts.

The Secret Keepers of Old Depot Grocery by Amanda Cox

After tragedy plunges her into grief and unresolved anger, Sarah Ashby returns to her childhood home determined to finally follow her long-denied dream of running Old Depot Grocery alongside her mother and grandmother. But when she arrives, her mother, Rosemary, announces to her that the store is closing. Sarah and her grandmother, Glory Ann, make a pact to save the store, but Rosemary has worked her entire life to make sure her daughter never follows in her footsteps. She has her reasons–but she’ll certainly never reveal the real one.

Mini-Review — Heirlooms

23 Mar

My book club is discussing Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd this month. I would characterize this novel as women’s fiction with strong themes of family and friendship. The book shifts back and forth between two time periods, and the main characters are Helen and Eunhee and their granddaughters, Cassidy and Grace. Cassidy arrives back on Whidby Island, Washington following her grandmother’s death and is tasked with sharing long kept secrets as well as continuing her grandmother’s legacy. I really liked this book with its juxtaposition of challenges the women faced. Both storylines are compelling, and the characters are well-developed. There is a reference to a Korean saying that is translated as a taste of her hands, indicating how each woman takes the traditional and adds her own unique take. While the phrase originally relates to cooking, I loved how the author applies it to other traditions/expectations while showing how a person to forges a new path. I love this saying and have found it pertinent in many things in my own life. There is a strong faith thread that runs naturally throughout the book.

I really liked Heirlooms and heartily recommend it. You are going to want to talk about it too, so grab a reading buddy or your book club and dig in. (Note: the author has a great book club resource available on her website.)

Highly Recommended.

Audience: adults.

(I purchased this book from Amazon. All opinions expressed are mine alone.)

Answering a woman’s desperate call for help, young Navy widow Helen Devries opens her Whidbey Island home as a refuge to Choi Eunhee. As they bond over common losses and a delicate, potentially devastating secret, their friendship spans the remainder of their lives.

After losing her mother, Cassidy Quinn spent her childhood summers with her gran, Helen, at her farmhouse. Nourished by her grandmother’s love and encouragement, Cassidy discovers a passion that she hopes will bloom into a career. But after Helen passes, Cassidy learns that her home and garden have fallen into serious disrepair. Worse, a looming tax debt threatens her inheritance. Facing the loss of her legacy and in need of allies and ideas, Cassidy reaches out to Nick, her former love, despite the complicated emotions brought by having him back in her life.

Cassidy inherits not only the family home but a task, spoken with her grandmother’s final breaths: ask Grace Kim—Eunhee’s granddaughter—to help sort through the contents of the locked hope chest in the attic. As she and Grace dig into the past, they unearth their grandmothers’ long-held secret and more. Each startling revelation reshapes their understanding of their grandmothers and ultimately inspires the courage to take risks and make changes to own their lives.

Set in both modern-day and midcentury Whidbey Island, Washington, this dual-narrative story of four women—grandmothers and granddaughters—`intertwines across generations to explore the secrets we keep, the love we pass down, and the heirlooms we inherit from a well-lived life.

The author of more than fifty books, Sandra Byrd’s work has received many awards, nominations, and accolades, including a starred review, PW Pick from Publisher’s Weekly, as well as multiple starred reviews and Best Book selections from Library Journal. Other awards include the Historical Novel Society’s Editor’s Choice award, two Christy Awards nominations, a Bookpage Top Pick for Romance, and inclusion on Booklist’s Top Ten Inspirational Books of the Year list.

A dedicated foodie, Sandra cooks through the topic and location of every book she writes. In addition, she collects vintage glass and serve ware in her free time, loves long walks with her husband, and Sunday Suppers with her growing family.

Visit her at sandrabyrd.com or http://www.sandrabyrdbookcoach.com.

First Line Friday — Heirlooms

3 Mar

Happy Friday! My book club is reading Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd this month. I have already read it and LOVED it! It is dual timeline women’s fiction featuring 2 women of the 1950s and their granddaughters. Secrets were kept in the past and uncovered in the present. I am really looking forward to talking about this book!

Here’s the first line:

Helen Devries carefully removed her nurse’s cap, fluffing her platinum back-combed bouffant, crackling the Aqua Net lacquering it in place.

Answering a woman’s desperate call for help, young Navy widow Helen Devries opens her Whidbey Island home as a refuge to Choi Eunhee. As they bond over common losses and a delicate, potentially devastating secret, their friendship spans the remainder of their lives.

After losing her mother, Cassidy Quinn spent her childhood summers with her gran, Helen, at her farmhouse. Nourished by her grandmother’s love and encouragement, Cassidy discovers a passion that she hopes will bloom into a career. But after Helen passes, Cassidy learns that her home and garden have fallen into serious disrepair. Worse, a looming tax debt threatens her inheritance. Facing the loss of her legacy and in need of allies and ideas, Cassidy reaches out to Nick, her former love, despite the complicated emotions brought by having him back in her life.

Cassidy inherits not only the family home but a task, spoken with her grandmother’s final breaths: ask Grace Kim—Eunhee’s granddaughter—to help sort through the contents of the locked hope chest in the attic. As she and Grace dig into the past, they unearth their grandmothers’ long-held secret and more. Each startling revelation reshapes their understanding of their grandmothers and ultimately inspires the courage to take risks and make changes to own their lives.

Set in both modern-day and midcentury Whidbey Island, Washington, this dual-narrative story of four women—grandmothers and granddaughters—intertwines across generations to explore the secrets we keep, the love we pass down, and the heirlooms we inherit from a well-lived life.

The author of more than fifty books, Sandra Byrd’s work has received many awards, nominations, and accolades, including a starred review, PW Pick from Publisher’s Weekly, as well as multiple starred reviews and Best Book selections from Library Journal. Other awards include the Historical Novel Society’s Editor’s Choice award, two Christy Awards nominations, a Bookpage Top Pick for Romance, and inclusion on Booklist’s Top Ten Inspirational Books of the Year list.

A dedicated foodie, Sandra cooks through the topic and location of every book she writes. In addition, she collects vintage glass and serve ware in her free time, loves long walks with her husband, and Sunday Suppers with her growing family.

Visit her at sandrabyrd.com or http://www.sandrabyrdbookcoach.com.

March Book Club Selection — Heirlooms

1 Mar

I’ve already read the March book club selection — Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd. It is excellent! Women’s fiction with dual timelines –my book club is going to love it!

Have you read it? I’d love to know what you think!

Answering a woman’s desperate call for help, young Navy widow Helen Devries opens her Whidbey Island home as a refuge to Choi Eunhee. As they bond over common losses and a delicate, potentially devastating secret, their friendship spans the remainder of their lives.

After losing her mother, Cassidy Quinn spent her childhood summers with her gran, Helen, at her farmhouse. Nourished by her grandmother’s love and encouragement, Cassidy discovers a passion that she hopes will bloom into a career. But after Helen passes, Cassidy learns that her home and garden have fallen into serious disrepair. Worse, a looming tax debt threatens her inheritance. Facing the loss of her legacy and in need of allies and ideas, Cassidy reaches out to Nick, her former love, despite the complicated emotions brought by having him back in her life.

Cassidy inherits not only the family home but a task, spoken with her grandmother’s final breaths: ask Grace Kim—Eunhee’s granddaughter—to help sort through the contents of the locked hope chest in the attic. As she and Grace dig into the past, they unearth their grandmothers’ long-held secret and more. Each startling revelation reshapes their understanding of their grandmothers and ultimately inspires the courage to take risks and make changes to own their lives.

Set in both modern-day and midcentury Whidbey Island, Washington, this dual-narrative story of four women—grandmothers and granddaughters—intertwines across generations to explore the secrets we keep, the love we pass down, and the heirlooms we inherit from a well-lived life.

The author of more than fifty books, Sandra’s work has received many awards, nominations, and accolades, including a starred review, PW Pick from Publisher’s Weekly, as well as multiple starred reviews and Best Book selections from Library Journal. Other awards include the Historical Novel Society’s Editor’s Choice award, two Christy Awards nominations, a Bookpage Top Pick for Romance, and inclusion on Booklist’s Top Ten Inspirational Books of the Year list.

A dedicated foodie, Sandra cooks through the topic and location of every book she writes. In addition, she collects vintage glass and serve ware in her free time, loves long walks with her husband, and Sunday Suppers with her growing family.

Visit her at sandrabyrd.com or http://www.sandrabyrdbookcoach.com.

Audiobooks Vs. Book-Books

15 Feb

I read physical books, ebooks, and listen to audiobooks — I love books in all forms. I choose audiobooks mainly for travel and exercise/chores. The last two books I listened to brought home for me the debate over whether audiobooks or book-books are best. I generally say the more the merrier. If you can get in more reading by listening then all power to you. However, the experiences I just had made me reconsider. My problem wasn’t a bad narrator or technical difficulties. It revolved around content, of which the book-books and audiobooks share.

I’m not going to share the titles of the audiobooks — one was general market and one was Christian fiction — because I disliked them both! The general market had adult situations and language I could do without, while the CF also had some adult language and had some pretty graphic violence. Basically I couldn’t unhear any of those things.

When reading a physical copy or ebook, you can skim. When faced with a scene that should have remained behind a closed door or one that inspires nightmares, I can skip ahead. And when a particularly nasty word is presented I don’t have to sound it out in my head. Listening often feels like a slap in the face.

General market offerings often have things I don’t like, so I usually do more research before choosing a book to read or listen to. On the other hand, I am more trusting of Christian fiction, especially when published by the traditional houses, and often don’t do a thorough vetting process.

I still listen to audiobooks. In fact, I am currently listening to Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd, my book club’s March selection. It is excellent, by the way (see blurb below). No offensive language or cringe-inducing scenes, just wonderful storytelling. But I am going to be more discerning going ahead. Even if a book is CF, if I don’t know anything about it or the author (which I didn’t) I’ll look at reviews, especially of trusted book friends. I have a list of wonderful reviewers on the sidebar to turn to.

So what do you think?

Audiobooks or book-books?

Answering a woman’s desperate call for help, young Navy widow Helen Devries opens her Whidbey Island home as a refuge to Choi Eunhee. As they bond over common losses and a delicate, potentially devastating secret, their friendship spans the remainder of their lives.

After losing her mother, Cassidy Quinn spent her childhood summers with her gran, Helen, at her farmhouse. Nourished by her grandmother’s love and encouragement, Cassidy discovers a passion that she hopes will bloom into a career. But after Helen passes, Cassidy learns that her home and garden have fallen into serious disrepair. Worse, a looming tax debt threatens her inheritance. Facing the loss of her legacy and in need of allies and ideas, Cassidy reaches out to Nick, her former love, despite the complicated emotions brought by having him back in her life.

Cassidy inherits not only the family home but a task, spoken with her grandmother’s final breaths: ask Grace Kim—Eunhee’s granddaughter—to help sort through the contents of the locked hope chest in the attic. As she and Grace dig into the past, they unearth their grandmothers’ long-held secret and more. Each startling revelation reshapes their understanding of their grandmothers and ultimately inspires the courage to take risks and make changes to own their lives.

Set in both modern-day and midcentury Whidbey Island, Washington, this dual-narrative story of four women—grandmothers and granddaughters—intertwines across generations to explore the secrets we keep, the love we pass down, and the heirlooms we inherit from a well-lived life.

Top 10 Tuesday — Winter TBR List

13 Dec

Happy Tuesday! Today bloggers are revealing their Winter TBR Lists. Mine as usual is a mix of hopes and dreams — I hope I get to them all and I dream of whittling down the pile. 😉 My list includes book club choices, books for review, and just-because-I-want-to-read-them books. I hope you find one to include on your list!

For more bloggers’ TBR lists, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Books on My Winter TBR List

The Brilliance of Stars by J’Nell Ciesielski

The Cairo Curse by Pepper Basham

Cold Light of Day by Elizabeth Goddard

Critical Threat by Lynette Eason

Daughter of Eden by Jill Eileen Smith

Dangerous Beauty by Melissa Koslin

Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd

Honor Bound by Hallee Bridgeman

A Quilt for Christmas by Melody Carlson

Within These Walls of Sorrow by Amanda Barrat

Top 10 Tuesday — 2023 Book Club Picks

6 Dec

Happy Tuesday! This week’s TTT is a Freebie, so I decided to highlight the novels my book club chose to read in 2023. Every year we vote at our November meeting on the books we will be reading in the following year. We choose 9 and leave 2 spots open for me to surprise them (usually new releases by favorite authors) and a Christmas-themed novel to vote on later for our December selection. I compile a list of books and those with majority votes are chosen. It’s a practice that has worked for us for 20+ years! I hope you find a book to love.

For more bookish goodness, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

My Book Club’s 2023 Selections

The Brilliance of Stars by J’Nell Ciesielski

Broker of Lies by Steven James

Cold Light of Day by Elizabeth Goddard

Daughter of Eden by Jill Eileen Smith

Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd

Honor Bound by Hallee Bridgeman

The One You’re With by Lauren K. Denton

Roots of Wood And Stone by Amanda Wen

The Sound of Light by Sarah Sundin

Top 10 Tuesday — Thankful Freebie

22 Nov

Happy Thanksgiving week! That is how I am framing it, because my family began the festivities last Saturday with an extended family lunch. This week I will have all my kiddos and their families (including my beautiful one and only grandchild) at our home in the beautiful north Georgia mountains. We certainly do have a lot to be thankful for. In the past I have posted about books featuring families, books that helped make me the reader I am today, and all kinds of bookish goodies I am thankful for. Today’s TTT features one book from each month so far this year that I am thankful I had the opportunity to read. Spanning a variety of genres, the books featured well-developed characters, just the right setting for my mood 😉 , action, and well-told, engaging stories. I hope you find a book to love!

For more thankful bloggers, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top Books I Am Thankful For

January — A Light on The Hill by Connilyn Cossette

I used this novel as a part of my Faith And Fiction Bible study of sanctuary cities. What a wonderful resource to draw from.

February — Bride of A Distant Isle by Sandra Byrd

An “oldie” but a goodie, I loved going back to Victorian England in this novel.

March — In Search of A Prince by Toni Shiloh

Toni’s unique setting and fairytale nod to Princess Diaries was a delight.

April — All That It Takes by Nicole Deese

Women’s fiction/romance that touched my heart.

May — The Librarian of Saint-Malo by Mario Escobar

English translation of Escobar’s moving novel set in WWII-era France.

June — Fatal Code by Natalie Walters

An unputdownable romantic suspense is just what I needed to kickstart my summer reading.

July — Sea Glass Cottage by Irene Hannon

What is a summer without a visit to Hope Harbor?!

August — Bookshop by The Sea by Denise Hunter

Another winner of a summer read. A small beach town and a bookshop, what’s not to love?

September — Every Word Unsaid by Kimberly Duffy

An exotic location, an independent and exasperating heroine, timely message.

October — The Lady’s Mine by Francine Rivers

A feel good read that sparked a lot of great conversation with my book club.

November — Where The Blue Sky Begins by Katie Powner

The best book I have read all year!

Top 10 Tuesday — Geographical Titles

13 Sep

Happy Tuesday! Surprise, surprise! I am actually sticking to the topic today. It was fun looking back at the books I’ve read to find titles (and covers!) that could be found on a map, albeit a fictional one. 😉 Many genres are represented. I hope you find a book to love!

For more geographical titles, check out That Artsy Reader Girl.

Top 10 Geographical Titles

Blackberry Beach by Irene Hannon

Bookshop by The Sea by Denise Hunter

Bride of A Distant Isle by Sandra Byrd

The Deadly Shallows by Dani Pettrey

The House at The End of The Moor by Michelle Griep

A Light on A Hill by Connilyn Cossette

On The Cliffs of Foxglove Manor by Jaime Jo Wright

A Silver Willow by The Shore by Kelli Stuart

Under The Bayou Moon by Valerie Fraser Luesse

Wonderland Creek by Lynn Austin

Blog Tour — Heirlooms

8 Jul

Heirlooms JustRead Blog + Review Tour

Welcome to the Blog + Review Tour for Heirlooms by Sandra Byrd, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

ABOUT THE BOOK

Heirlooms Title: Heirlooms
Author: Sandra Byrd
Publisher: Tyndale
Release Date: July 5, 2022
Genre: Dual Timeline Fiction, Christian

Answering a woman’s desperate call for help, young Navy widow Helen Devries opens her Whidbey Island home as a refuge to Choi Eunhee. As they bond over common losses and a delicate, potentially devastating secret, their friendship spans the remainder of their lives.

After losing her mother, Cassidy Quinn spent her childhood summers with her gran, Helen, at her farmhouse. Nourished by her grandmother’s love and encouragement, Cassidy discovers a passion that she hopes will bloom into a career. But after Helen passes, Cassidy learns that her home and garden have fallen into serious disrepair. Worse, a looming tax debt threatens her inheritance. Facing the loss of her legacy and in need of allies and ideas, Cassidy reaches out to Nick, her former love, despite the complicated emotions brought by having him back in her life.

Cassidy inherits not only the family home but a task, spoken with her grandmother’s final breaths: ask Grace Kim—Eunhee’s granddaughter—to help sort through the contents of the locked hope chest in the attic. As she and Grace dig into the past, they unearth their grandmothers’ long-held secret and more. Each startling revelation reshapes their understanding of their grandmothers and ultimately inspires the courage to take risks and make changes to own their lives.

Set in both modern-day and midcentury Whidbey Island, Washington, this dual-narrative story of four women—grandmothers and granddaughters—intertwines across generations to explore the secrets we keep, the love we pass down, and the heirlooms we inherit from a well-lived life.

“This is women’s fiction as it is meant to be written with intriguing characters making decisions that ripple through generations.” – Library Journal, starred review

PURCHASE LINKS*: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | BookDepository | IndieBound | Christianbook | BookBub

EXCERPT

Eunhee looked down at the dinners. “I have not eaten a meal in an aluminum tray. Is this like prepared meals for away duty in the military?”

 “Kind of.” A small ice rink of gravy teetered like a lopsided hat atop Eunhee’s portion of turkey. “Oh! It needs more time in the oven. I’ll be right back.” 

Once Helen returned with the meals, fully heated, Eunhee ate slowly, smiling between each bite of turkey, cornbread, and buttered peas. Helen reached over to take their trays and noticed Eunhee’s was largely uneaten. “Don’t you like TV dinners?”

“They could use a few spices,” Eunhee admitted. 

Helen’s heart sank. “I wanted to offer a comfortable, soft nest to you, my new friend.”

Eunhee smiled and looked her straight in the eye. “Perfect cooking does not make a good friend or a soft nest. A soft heart makes for a soft nest, and love and honest talk make good friends.”


ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sandra Byrd

Bestselling author Sandra Byrd continues to earn both industry acclaim and high praise from readers everywhere. The author of more than fifty books, her work has received many awards, nominations, and accolades, including the Historical Novel Society’s Editor’s Choice award, two Christy Award nominations, Two Library Journal Best Book selections, and inclusion on Booklist’s Top Ten Inspirational Books of the Year list. Her traditionally published books include titles by Howard Books, a division of Simon and Schuster, Tyndale House Publishers, WaterBrook Press, an imprint of Penguin Random House, and Bethany House. She’s also an independent author.

Sandra loves walking, the beach, cooking and baking, photography, watching Escape to the Country, Fake or Fortune, and Chef’s Table, as well as spending time with family and friends – real and fictional!

Connect with Sandra at http://www.sandrabyrd.com, http://www.sandrabyrdbookcoach.com, or through social media platforms.

CONNECT WITH SANDRA: Website | Facebook | Instagram | Twitter


TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a King Arthur Cinnamon Roll Kit, including the heavy-gauge pan, plus a $25 Starbucks card!

Heirlooms JustRead Giveaway

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway began at midnight July 5, 2022 and lasts through 11:59 PM EST on July 12, 2022. US only. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE


Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!

JustRead Publicity Tours

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.