Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Charlotte Hubbard presents Harvest of Blessings

Today, we have Charlotte Hubbard and her book Harvest of Blessing.

Peep Rep: Will she bless me with a prize?

Liza: One random commenter will receive a $50 Amazon or B/N gift card.

Peep Rep: Oh me...pick me!

Liza: Settle down so we can learn more about the book.
by Charlotte Hubbard


The tranquil little town of Willow Ridge is facing a startling challenge. Wealthy Nora Glick Landwehr is determined to make it her home again—and put her past to rest. Cast out by her own family, Nora can’t reconcile with Old Amish ways or her strict father. But she’ll do anything to help her community embrace the future . . . and make amends to the daughter she had to give up. She certainly has no time for her reckless new neighbor Luke Hooley. They disagree about almost everything. And how can she trust him if he always seems to believe the worst about her? Somehow, though, his unexpected support and passionate heart are helping her find her own way in faith. And Nora will discover that even in the face of insidious lies and unyielding judgment, God creates unexpected chances for forgiveness—and love.

“Looking good,” he murmured with a devilish smile.

Nora somehow contained her irritation. “Hiram,” she said with a curt nod. “If you’ll excuse me—”

“Oh, there’s no excuse for you today,” he quipped as his gaze roamed the length of her. “You and Hooley are as mismatched as a thoroughbred racehorse yoked to an ox. What do you see in him, anyway?”

Nora didn’t try to break past him, because that would bring her into contact with the arm he’d planted against the wall, right at her chest level. “You’re entitled to your opinion,” she muttered, “but—”

“But I’m really here with a proposition,” Hiram interrupted. “A business proposition, that is.”

As he moved closer, Nora had nowhere to go but backwards, into the deeper shadow. As her back found the wall she instinctively bent one leg up, so her knee was in a strategic position. She remained silent, making Hiram talk while she figured out how to get out of this trap he’d set.

“Several friends have told me how excited they are to be consigning items to your new store,” Hiram continued. “What a shame it would be if your business went belly-up. Most small businesses—especially those owned by women—fail within the first year because they’re undercapitalized. I’d like to help prevent that.”

I just bet you would, Nora thought, but she kept her mouth shut. Anything she said would give him more ammunition.

Hiram smirked. “Miriam Hooley and Andy Leitner can attest to that,” he stated. “They couldn’t keep their doors open if they didn’t have a benefactor who owned their buildings and relieved them of all that overhead. So what if I bought my barn back?” he asked. “What if I became your silent partner, Nora?”

“No way,” she muttered. “I don’t care to pay the sort of interest you’d expect.”

Hiram’s chuckle echoed in the small hallway. “Nora, my dear,” he protested in a silky voice. “You misunderstand my—”

The door to the mens’ room swung open so hard it hit the wall.

“The lady said no, Knepp,” Luke snapped as he stepped into the hallway. “I’ve got zero tolerance for snakes, so you’d better slither back into your hole. Got it?”

Hiram backed away from her. His jet black goatee rippled with his grin as he pointed first to Nora and then to Luke. “There’s just no accounting for taste, I guess,” he said with a shake of his head. “If you care to reconsider my offer, Nora, my door’s always open.”

This is an intriguing novel about people who have chosen to live a different life from the typical American. They live beside us, but not among us. In many ways they are like us, but we normally focus on their differences. I'm referring to the Amish and the Mennonites.

Author Charlotte Hubbard has written a fabulous series about the Amish. While I have read a bit about real life Amish, this is the first Amish novel I’ve ever picked up. What a fabulous book! I cannot wait to read the rest of this series. It is both authentic and inspiring.
Similar to most novels, there’s a villain (two if you count the one in Nora’s past), a bad boy hero, and a strong fabulous heroine who has returned home after her husband divorced her for another woman. 

At sixteen Nora was ousted from her community and family for refusing to say who had gotten her pregnant. After her failed marriage with a man not of her faith, she uses all her money acquired in the divorce settlement to buy a house in her former community.

She catches the eye of her neighbor when she drives up in a convertible, wearing a baseball cap and shorts. 
Luke remains in Rumspringa despite his mature age. Thus, he is not under the authority of the church and may do what he pleases.

But Nora has far greater problems than a handsome, wild neighbor. She has a daughter, which she left on her aunts’ door as a baby. She had a life among the good people of her youth that she wants to reclaim. She wants to come home, but she is no longer the frightened young girl who left. She's grown up away from her faith and her people. Is it even possible for her to return to the ways of her community?

This story sweeps you up and allows you to live the little and big moments of a quieter place. You’ll be taken in and loved by some characters and shunned be others, you’ll discover there are choices, degrees of faith that can allow you to not only live, but thrive in the community. And most of all, you experience love at its best and not just the love of a man and woman, but the love of an entire community.

This is a story to be experienced, not just read. It takes you to a different world, which might seem muted at first, but stay with it. This book kept me reading through the night. “Plain people” are in no way boring. And this book is a fabulous sweet story.

Seasons of the Heart, Book 5

• The Book Depository •• Amazon •• Barnes & Noble •

• B-A-M •• Chapters •• IndieBound •• Powell’s •• Kensington Books • 

 • Kensington Books •• Kindle •• Kobo •• iBooks •

Drawing upon her experiences in Jamesport, the largest Old Order Amish community west of the Mississippi, longtime Missourian Charlotte Hubbard writes of simpler times and a faith-based lifestyle in her Seasons of the Heart series. Like her heroine, Miriam Lantz Hooley, Charlotte considers it her personal mission to feed people. Faith and family, farming and food preservation are hallmarks of her lifestyle. She’s a deacon, a dedicated church musician and choir member, and when she’s not writing, she loves to try new recipes, crochet, and sew. Charlotte now lives in Minnesota with her husband and their border collie.

Facebook page =  Charlotte.Hubbard1

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  1. The peacefully beautiful cover is my favorite part of the post.

    1. Thanks for stopping today, Mai! Good luck in the drawing!

  2. Enjoyed reading today's excerpt.

    1. I so appreciate you spending some time with my story, Karen! Thanks, and good luck in the drawing!

  3. Liza, thanks so much for featuring my book on your blog site today, and for your wonderful review! I especially love it when a reader new to my books falls into the story head-first!

  4. Thanks so much for the review!

    Trix, vitajex(at)Aol(Dot)com

  5. Replies
    1. Thanks for spending some time with me today, Rita!

  6. What a wonderful review. I loved it. I also really loved this excerpt.

    1. Thanks, MomJane! I have to say this is one of the most alluring scenes I've ever written in an Amish story!

  7. Great review. Sounds like a wonderful story.

  8. Sounds like a nice romantic story, thanks for sharing and getting to know you.

    1. So glad you spent some time with me today! Thanks!

  9. Thanks for the review and excerpt!

  10. I enjoyed the review and the excerpt also...all very nice!

  11. I really enjoyed today's excerpt. Thank you for the post and the giveaway!

  12. I hope this isn't a second comment, the first one didn't show.
    I love reading about the Amish and their lifestyle. I loved reading the Blurb and Excerpt today! Amish have the same problems to deal with like anyone else, just because they do live in a community, they still have problems. I think Nora is brave to return to her community after being shunned and leaving her baby. I'd love to read this book to find out what happen to Nora. I can't buy any books right now, I still paying off the lawyer I had to get to fight for my mom(big sad story). Also I love the cover on this Thanks for this great giveaway.
    Donna Harris


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