Category: Small Towne USA

Blog Book Tour | “Robin’s Reward” by June McCrary Jacobs A small towne #sweetromance wherein the #library plays a central role in uniting the community!

Posted Saturday, 2 May, 2015 by jorielov , , , 1 Comment

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Acquired Book By:

I was selected to be a tour stop on “Robin’s Reward” virtual book tour by the author June McCrary Jacobs. I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the author Ms Jacobs, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein. 

I was not influenced by finding out I was written in as a character in this novel as I had no foreknowledge of this fact only that there was a surprise hidden in the story I might enjoy finding. I blog as I am reading, therefore, as I wrote my first impression and reaction to finding “Jorie” in “Robin’s Reward”. I had already written the first half of this review (where I celebrated the connections between bloggers & writers), including the first section of the review itself prior to the reveal. The first two paragraphs reflecting my joy of a Jacobs novel was also composed. Thereby I can attest even after finding myself a character, this review is my honest impression as a ‘first time’ reader of the novel.

Celebrating the connections between book bloggers & authors:

One of the best blessings of being a book blogger are the connections I have made to the authors who have given voice and mirth to characters of whom I have fancied finding within their novels! Each time I walk away from a story writ with such a felicity of joy to read, I earmark the author in my mind to follow-up with in the future, not just to check-in on where they are on their writerly journey but to see if they have released a new story! I have even taken this to mentally writing down a note about which books I want to re-read or purchase outright if the copy I had for review was an ARC.

Some of the writers I’ve crossed paths with have kept in touch with me, updating me about what they are doing next and/or offering me to receive their next release in exchange for an honest review. When this happens, I must confess my heart bubbles over in joy! I get wicked happy getting a second chance to re-admire the work the writer is producing as I am finding such a heart-warming presence of Indie & Self Published authors, I daresay I am thankful I started book blogging!

I believe I would still have found their stories, but it might have taken me quite a bit longer to find them in the long run! This is one reason I decide to start using a new hashtag as I tweet simply called #JorieLovesIndies as I truly do celebrate the writers who are championing the book world by releasing their stories outside of Major Trade markets. I appreciate not only their dedication to quality in producing books that are professionally edited but a selection of story whose craft of creation is a top notch addition to any reader’s bookshelf.

I love celebrating these authors, and I decided the best way to do so is to thread my route of discovery through a new tag! I will expand on this idea over the weekend in a separate post, as I’m highlighting quite a few novelists who fit this category throughout May, but today, I simply wanted to draw your attention to the fact Ms Jacobs is amongst the writers I place in this category! You will also be able to find the stories indexed on my blog by opening the category: Jorie Loves Indies! (by Monday this index will be completed)

Blog Book Tour | “Robin’s Reward” by June McCrary Jacobs A small towne #sweetromance wherein the #library plays a central role in uniting the community!Robin's Reward
by June McCrary Jacobs
Source: Direct from Author

Bonita Creek’s librarian Robin Bennett is heartbroken after being abandoned by her husband, Thomas. The mysterious and handsome Jeff Clarke arrives unexpectedly and touches Robin’s life with his wit and warmth. Then, without warning, Jeff’s harsh words and abrasive actions scare her off, and Robin’s hope of finding true love withers again.

Just when it seems Robin and Jeff might have a future, Susan Stinson, whose cruel taunting has plagued Robin since they met as young teens, decides Jeff should be hers, not Robin’s. Susan’s anger and jealousy escalate dangerously. Her vindictiveness threatens the foundation of Jeff and Robin’s young relationship.

Robin’s journey through the peaks and valleys of her life meanders along the twists and turns of new challenges. Is a relationship which began with both parties harboring secrets destined to survive? Can they move past their troubles and the obstacles in their path to find love and happiness together? When their pasts rear their ugly heads, Jeff and Robin must use their faith to remain strong and true. But will it be enough for them to embrace a life of love, trials, and blessings . . . together?

Places to find the book:

Add to LibraryThing

Also by this author: , A Holiday Miracle in Apple Blossom

Series: Bonita Creek Trilogy,


Genres: Contemporary Romance, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Sweet Romance


Published by Self Published Author

on 10th March, 2015

Format: Paperback

Pages: 290

Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards Badge created by Jorie in Canva. Coffee and Tea Clip Art Set purchased on Etsy; made by rachelwhitetoo.

Read an Excerpt of the Novel:

(the following is permitted to be shared by the author Ms Jacobs and was left intact as she gave it to me to share with my readers. Therefore the copyright portion of the novel are as they would be seen if you picked up the novel to read.)

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com
EXCERPT FROM ‘ROBIN’S REWARD’, BONITA CREEK TRILOGY, BOOK 1:
© June McCrary Jacobs, 2015.
Copyright 2015 June McCrary Jacobs
Front Cover Design: Sherry Gammon copyright 2015
Interior Design: Cindy C Bennett
Images copyright via DepositPhotos.com
Elet_1 (Anna Bogush)
Pakhnyushchyy (Vitalik Pakhnyushchyy)
daseaford (David Seaford)

All rights reserved. No parts of this book may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission. Exceptions are reviewers who may quote short excerpts for review. Please write to junemccraryjacobs@gmail.com for permission. This book is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental. The characters are products of the author’s imagination and are used fictitiously. All Rights Reserved USA

~ DEDICATION ~
Robin’s Reward is dedicated to my dear friend, Nancy. Thank you for your kindness, guidance, encouragement, and support over the past three decades. Your friendship has been a blessing in my life.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Chapter One

I’m as hot and sticky as the center of a freshly-roasted campfire marshmallow, Miss Praise.” Perspiration trickled past Robin’s sunburned neck, under her collar, and down her back. Her blouse was plastered to her skin.

“I’m not feeling very feminine or lady-like in this condition, if you catch my drift. This brings us to my next question. What was I thinking starting up with this garden renovation project on the hottest March afternoon ever recorded in Bonita Creek? Am I nuts? Wait—don’t answer that.”

Some sympathy from Miss Praise, like purring or even winding herself around Robin’s legs, would’ve been comforting. Instead, the elderly tabby was dozing comfortably in her cozy quilt-lined basket on the shaded porch. Robin was drained from tangling with her vintage hydrangea bush for the past four hours.

She’d read gardening was great exercise, but it gave Robin’s thoughts too many chances to wander. She dreaded those dark, dreary spaces in her mind permanently occupied by unhappy memories and heart-wrenching regrets. Since she wasn’t accomplishing much anyway, she released her shovel to take a break with a refreshing glass or two of her favorite iced tea. She straightened up and stretched her aching arms over her head.

“I’m parched, how about you? Want something cold to drink?” She spoke in the direction of the faded gray cat. Apparently, Miss Praise had heard enough of Robin’s whining. The cat yawned, stretched, flicked her tail, and hopped daintily out of her basket. She lumbered down the brick path to seek refuge in the peaceful back garden. Naturally, Robin hadn’t expected Miss Praise to respond, but talking to the cat helped her feel connected to her Grandma Estelle. The older woman had passed on a few years ago and Robin still ached for her grandmother’s presence. She kneaded her fatigued lower back with her knuckles and sighed deeply.

Please click on the Spoiler button to reveal
the rest of the excerpt for Robin’s Reward.

View Spoiler »

Author Biography:

June McCrary JacobsAward-winning author, June McCrary Jacobs, was the winner of Cedar Fort Publishing’s 2013 Holiday Tale Contest for her debut novella, ‘A Holiday Miracle in Apple Blossom’. ‘Robin’s Reward’ is her first full-length novel, and is set in her favorite location in California—the Mendocino coastal region. This book is the first installment of the ‘Bonita Creek Trilogy’.

June’s original sewing, quilting, and stitchery designs have been published in over one hundred books, magazines, and blogs in the past few years. When she’s not writing, reading, or sewing, June enjoys cooking, walking, and visiting art and history museums. She also enjoys touring historic homes and gardens and strolling around the many historic Gold Rush towns in the Sierra Nevada foothills. In the summertime you can find June at a variety of county fairs and the California State Fair admiring the sewing projects, quilts, and handiwork other inspired seamstresses, quilters, craftspeople, and artists have created.

CONNECT WITH THE AUTHOR:
June enjoys connecting with readers, authors, aspiring writers, bloggers, designers, sewers, quilters, and crafters. Please connect with June:

Site | Facebook | GoodReads | LinkedIn

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Posted Saturday, 2 May, 2015 by jorielov in #JorieLovesIndies, 21st Century, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Book | Novel Excerpt, Book Review (non-blog tour), Bookish Discussions, Botany, Bullies and the Bullied, Christianity, Contemporary Romance, Death, Sorrow, and Loss, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Diet Weight & Body Image, Divorce & Martial Strife, Finding Yourself a Character in a Novel, Grief & Anguish of Guilt, Horticulture, Indie Author, Jorie Loves A Story Cuppa Book Love Awards, Librarians & Library Staff, Local Libraries | Research Libraries, Modern Day, Orphans & Guardians, Self-Published Author, Singletons & Commitment, Small Towne Fiction, Small Towne USA, Sweet Romance, Terminal Illness &/or Cancer

Book Review | “Time and Again” (Book 1: History #Mystery series) by Deborah Heal #RRSciFiMonth

Posted Saturday, 24 January, 2015 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Ruminations & Impressions Book Review Banner created by Jorie in Canva. Photo Credit: Unsplash Public Domain Photographer Sergey Zolkin.

Time and Again by Deborah Heal

{ Book One in the History Mystery Trilogy }

{ Unclaimed Legacy (Book 2) + Every Hill & Mountain (Book 3) round out the trilogy }

Published By: Write Brain Activity
Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook and Audiobook

Converse via: #HistoryMysterySeries & #TimeAndAgain

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Acquired Book By:

My path originally crossed with Ms. Heal during her blog tour last year (2013), when her third novel in the History Mystery series was making it’s way through the book blogosphere whilst stopping on Inspirational fiction blogs I frequently visit. It was on one of these tour stops I had the happy joy in winning a copy of “Every Hill & Mountain” and ever since then, I had had it in mind to blog about this beautiful time travel series for Sci Fi November! I contacted the author about this particular idea and she offered to send me the first two novels in the series with matching cover-art to the third novel, as I have the original cover-art designs for the History Mystery series – where the house is featured but is not prominent as there is a girl featured as well on “Time and Again”.

Therefore, I received a complimentary copy of the book direct from the author Deborah Heal, in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read the Series:

What originally drew me into the folds of this particular time travel series is the overall premise, of how an old house can become a portal of a window into time travel! The idea of having the thread of a time travel narrative worked through the Inspirational side of literature was also an appeal, as I was quite curious how the science behind travelling in time might be explored and explained inasmuch as how the story would alter or change from traditional science fiction roots which are published through mainstream markets. As a hybrid reader whose mind is always open and seeking out new inventive ways of telling stories, I was most curious on how an INSPY writer would treat the scope of the story as much as the science behind it.

Book Review | “Time and Again” (Book 1: History #Mystery series) by Deborah Heal #RRSciFiMonthTime and Again
by Deborah Heal
Source: Direct from Author

An old house + A new computer program =

The travel opportunity of a lifetime…

…to another century.

Abby Thomas is spending the summer in a run-down old house with a bratty pre-teen named Merrideth she is supposed to tutor. Not a dream job. But it does come with perks.

There’s John Roberts, a devastatingly attractive neighbor who is almost too wonderful to be real.

And there’s the new computer program Beautiful Houses—also too amazing to be real. No one knows how it works, but with it she can rewind and fast-forward the lives of all the people who ever lived in the house, including Charlotte Miles.

In 1858, the house is a train stop on the Alton & Chicago Line. And Charlotte is stuck there serving meals to the passengers, wondering if she’ll ever get to have any fun. And then she meets two travelers who change her life forever.

There’s James McGuire with whom she falls in love. And there’s his boss, a young Springfield lawyer named Abraham Lincoln. His debate with political opponent Stephen Douglas catapults him onto the national stage. And it inspires Charlotte to take up the cause of abolition.

Places to find the book:

Borrow from a Public Library

Add to LibraryThing

Series: History Mystery,


Genres: Historical Fiction, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Time Travel Fiction


Published by Write Brain Activity

Format: Paperback

Time and Again Book Trailer via Deborah Heal

About Deborah Heal

Deborah Heal

Deborah Heal, the author of the Time and Again "history mystery" trilogy, which has been described as "Back to the Future meets virtual reality with a dash of Seventh Heaven thrown in," was born not far from the setting of her novel Every Hill and Mountain and grew up just down the road from the settings of Time and Again and Unclaimed Legacy.

Today she lives with her husband in Monroe County, Illinois, not far from the setting of Once Again: an inspirational novel of history, mystery & romance. She enjoys reading, gardening, and learning about regional history. She has three grown children, five grandchildren, and two canine buddies Digger and Scout, a.k.a. Dr. Bob in Unclaimed Legacy.

She loves to interact with her readers, who may learn more about the history behind the books at her website and her Facebook author page.

Fun Stuff for Your Blog via pureimaginationblog.com

Time travelling within the walls of an older home:

Heal has a good way of giving small details out about the condition of the old house, where you become delighted in finding out about how the wood and/or the fixtures are represented now verse how they would have been viewed when the house was originally built. There are certain passages that elude to the craftmanship of the care put into it’s structure, as much as a curiosity about certain staircases and what could be found outside in the barn. It has this rambling appeal to it, as if you think you know everything there is to be known about the house itself, yet it is within that moment of certainty that another mystery presents itself that is not as easily explained!

I liked the pace of how Abby encouraged Merrideth to seek out the charm of her new dwelling as much as to find how educational lessons of life and study can become if you ‘think outside the routine’ and ‘structure’ of traditional learning! Abby starts to seek a way to have the ‘house’ transform learning in a way that Merrideth can find tangible connections between what she’s learning and what she can see through experience. Read More

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Posted Saturday, 24 January, 2015 by jorielov in 19th Century, Abraham Lincoln, African-American History, African-American Literature, Astral Projection, Author Blog Tour, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Biographical Fiction & Non-Fiction, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Blogosphere Events & Happenings, Book Review (non-blog tour), Book Trailer, Bookish Discussions, Bookish Films, Bullies and the Bullied, Civil Rights, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Debut Novel, Divorce & Martial Strife, Drugs & Alcohol, Fathers and Daughters, Fly in the Ointment, Historical Fiction, Historical Mystery, History, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Lessons from Scripture, Parapsychological Gifts, Sci-Fi November, Single Mothers, Small Towne USA, Sweet Romance, Teacher & Student Relationships, The Deep South, The Sci-Fi Experience, Time Travel, Time Travel Adventure, Underground Railroad

Blog Book Tour | “Snow Angels” by Lezlie Anderson a short story filled with a lot of heart anchored by community, faith, and the blessings of Christmas!

Posted Tuesday, 23 December, 2014 by jorielov , , , 0 Comments

Parajunkee Designs

Snow Angels by Lezlie Anderson

Published By: Sweetwater Books (@SweetwaterBooks),
an imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc (@CedarFortBooks)

Available Formats: Paperback, Ebook

Converse on Twitter via: #SnowAngels & #Christmas #ShortStory

Acquired Book By: I am a regular tour hostess for blog tours via Cedar Fort whereupon I am thankful to have such a diverse amount of novels and non-fiction titles to choose amongst to host. I received a complimentary copy of “Snow Angels” direct from the publisher Sweetwater Books (imprint of Cedar Fort, Inc) in exchange for an honest review. I did not receive compensation for my opinions or thoughts shared herein.

Inspired to Read:

Short stories have truly inspired me each time I snuggle inside them as by being a book blogger I developed a keen awareness of their joyfulness of being read! Prior to book blogging, I must confess the short story eluded me, but as you will find throughout my Story Vault, there are quite a few short story collections of anthologies as much as individual short stories or novellas that have sparked a genuine interest in my literary heart to consume!

This particular short appealed to me as I grew up giving back to those in need as much as I was raised to be aware of others in my neighbourhood and community. This was a grounding of humility as much as it was an awareness of the greater good can be directly impacted by small acts of charity, kindness, and the joy of giving not being dependent on gratitude or a return of a reward. Kindness is sparked out of the beauty of joyfulness and a giving heart whose only return should be the warmth of how it feels to give without expecting anything given back to the giver.

I believe this is why at the core of who I am as a knitter, is a charity knitter who loves to accept donated  yarn in order to spin new patterns of fiber sequences which will uplift the receiver of my finished projects. I like to knit in joy as I stitch whilst laying thought to prayer especially when I am knitting prayer shawls but also with other small projects which once given I hope will carry with them a small fraction of the joy I had in stitching the pattern together, one stitch at a time. Outside of knitting, I have had such a wonderful warmth of spirit overtake me when I have given to someone in need or have acted in a way that gave an unexpected joy to someone who never felt they’d receive an unexpected gift from someone they knew or didn’t know personally.

Christmas and Thanksgiving are two of the best holidays as they seek to establish a way of slowing down and highlighting the bounty of blessings we receive each year in all the small ways people affect our lives. We each have the capacity of giving joy and happiness to another person, and the gifts we give do not even have to be contained in an item of what can be seen but can be as rewarding as a simple smile given out of a moment of grace or a spontaneous conversation knitted out of a common thread of interest. We uplift each other in numerous ways, but also through our contributions of service where we are helping someone in a way that they might not even expect a need was needing to be fulfilled.

In this way, and numerous others I am not highlighting a story about a family who was inspired to contribute to their neighbourhood in a way their neighbours would not expect truly gave me a wink of a smile and a mirth of joy in finding it!

Blog Book Tour | “Snow Angels” by Lezlie Anderson a short story filled with a lot of heart anchored by community, faith, and the blessings of Christmas!Snow Angels
by Lezlie Anderson

At Christmastime, a little charity can be contagious. . .

Tired of their kids grumbling through family night, one Mom and Dad decide to take action - by giving them ski masks! Donning their masks, the family goes out to shovel snow anonymously for a few neighbours. But with a little Christmas magic, these 'snow angels' end up changing their whole neighbourhood.

Share the joy of service with your friends and family. This sweet story is the perfect size to give to everyone on your list and makes a great reminder of the reason reason for the season.

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Reader's Note: This short story is considered to be a 'booklet' rather than a novella or a short story. It is printed and bound just like a print copy of a book, with a beautiful front cover and back jacket! The author's biography is the last page of the booklet and the story pages are surrounded by snowflakes! On the publisher's (Sweetwater Books) site, this story is related to being happily read by readers of two other holiday stories I've recently reviewed:

I whole-heartedly agree with the publisher, as each of these stories brings you such an uplift of joy! The publisher went on to express readers might be appreciate reading two other titles I have not yet heard of myself which is why I am sharing them with you! I believe these are two short stories or booklets similar to the ones I have already read and reviewed!

  • Jenny's Christmas Gift by John Pontius
  • A Christmas Thief by Carol Lynn Pearson

Places to find the book:

Genres: Christmas Story &/or Christmas Romance, Short Story or Novella


Published by Sweetwater Books

on 7th October, 2014

Format: Paperback

Pages: 12

About Lezlie Anderson

Lezlie Anderson has loved books since she learned to read at age four. She and her sisters used their wild imaginations playing in their backyard as princesses to being attacked by giant grasshoppers. The first books she remembers loving are “My Father’s Dragon” and “The Trouble with Miss Switch.”

Lezlie is married to a wonderful man, Steve, and they have three great children, 3 crazy cats, one tortoise, and a fish that has survived more hazards than should be possible. She loves chocolate, Dr. Pepper, and anything that her husband BBQ’s.

Read More

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

  • Go Indie
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Posted Tuesday, 23 December, 2014 by jorielov in 21st Century, Balance of Faith whilst Living, Bits & Bobbles of Jorie, Blog Tour Host & Reviewer, Cedar Fort Publishing & Media, Coming-Of Age, Debut Author, Family Drama, Family Life, Father-Daughter Relationships, Indie Author, Inspirational Fiction & Non-Fiction, Literature for Boys, Modern Day, Mother-Daughter Relationships, Mother-Son Relationships, School Life & Situations, Short Stories or Essays, Siblings, Small Towne USA