Blessings or Burdens

DSCN9570It’s spring! How can I NOT be happy? Seriously. There are green buds on the trees and tulips and blossoms on the fruit trees. My grass is looking alive again after having the tromped on, beat-up look of winter. I’m working on revisions and edits for another story that keeps me smiling because there are all new characters and plot twists from what I’ve worked with on the Bending Willow Trilogy for the last five years. Life is good.

My cute daughter who’s in South Korea wrote me yesterday and made me smile even more. It helped that she sent pictures of pretty flowers in Korea so I didn’t feel bad that she would miss my iris party here in a few weeks when my yard becomes magnificent! She talked about how we can view rain as either a blight or a blessing. I guess it rained pretty hard on her the other day (okay, a torrent). When we view rain through the smeary lens of misery, then it is a miserable thing. It ruins activities we had planned; it soaks us and makes us look like drowned kittens; it blots out the sun.

But if we clean off our glasses and see rain through a brighter focus, it transforms into a blessing. We cheer because it is nourishing the earth and filling up lakes and reservoirs; we smile because we see new colors only the moisture can bring out in objects. Rain can be fun as we get soaked and feel alive like little children as we run and step in puddles. It cleanses not only the earth, but our hearts as well…if we stop wearing the dirty lenses that blur everything into a burden.

P1040360So here’s to spring rains. May we have lots of showers. I know those of you back east are getting our share of them right now, and I’d just ask that you share a little with us here in the west. And whether we get a lot or a little, let us be grateful for each drop of rain in our lives and see it as a blessing, not a burden (literally and figuratively).

Have a super week!

Unmasking a Prince

I always look forward to reading a new book by Jennifer Moore. In the past, I’ve reviewed Becoming Lady Lockwood and  Lady Emma’s Campaign  by her and both stories had characters I came to adore. Her newest regency romance was the same. In this one, Meg has sailed from colonial America (Charleston) to sacrifice herself upon the altars of the English ton in hopes of ensnaring a rich man to marry and save her merchant family from financial ruin during the time when England has just declared war upon America and is seizing merchant ships and forcing men into the English army.

Prince Rodrigo of Spain has also come (or fled, really) to England because his country is being ripped apart by Napoleon’s armies and royalty are being captured by the French and held prisoners. He wants nothing to do with the English ton and all the Mamas who want to thrust their daughters upon him for a royal title. So he hides away in bitterness on his sister and brother-in-law’s estate in the country, hoping for an opportunity to return to his native land and look for his parents who have been captured.

When Meg runs into him as she’s venting frustration with rocks at a pond, he tells her his name is Carlo and that he cares for the Prince’s horses. Both characters become good friends as they relax their guards to be themselves. This story was a pleasure to read with romance, intrigue, adventure, history, and laughter woven into a wonderful tapestry of words.

**I received a free copy of this book from the author in exchange for my fair and honest review. I highly recommend everything about it–the professional formatting, the editing and language, and the story itself.

*  Amazon  *  Deseret Book  *

If you’d like to put it on your Goodreads To-Read List, click HERE. Also, enter a Rafflecopter giveaway for a chance to win $25 cash and a free copy of the book. Happy reading!

char2a

Between Now and Forever

Between now and never

If you follow my blog, you know I love to read as much as I love to write. I just finished this new YA book, and wanted to give it some love, as well as lead you to a giveaway for a chance to win $50.

Buh boom, buh boom.

My heart thrusts with a force that takes me by surprise. Telling me something I don’t understand. A splitting pain, a longing to slip back under. They tell me I was in a hit-and-run, but I can’t remember what happened that night. All I know is that I woke up with pictures in my pocket, a card from one of those photo booths in the mall. And I’m in the pictures. Cody Rush. Me and… Continue reading

Because He Lives

I love Easter because of the hope and life it brings, both physically with the new buds and flowers as life soars into trees and vegetation once more after winter, and spiritually with the message of hope our Savior’s resurrection instills in my heart, reminding me that there is light and life because He lives. Hope you enjoy this short video and remember Christ this Easter and always! Because He lives, we have hope for a brighter future. Because He lives, we will live again after the winter of our mortal life. Because He lives, we can change and be better. That knowledge brings me joy!

Char Signature

House Divided

house divided

There is a law irrevocably decreed in the state of Alabama that you must choose a team. You’re either an Auburn fan or an Alabama Fan. There is no fence sitting or waffling. It’s one or the other. However, it doesn’t mean that you can’t fall in love with someone from the opposing side. They even have a name for it … House Divided.

Ellie Eaton and Brady Jackson were just such a couple, but unfortunately they were separated by more than just their loyalty to a university. Against the odds and against the rules, Ellie and Brady dove right into the forbidden current of friendship and then love. Their sweet, innocent romance was one for the storybooks, but old rules and family prejudices Continue reading

March Madness

I’m over at Rebecca Belliston’s blog today for her March Madness series for writers and readers. My article is on the importance of reviews (sound familiar?). I did it earlier this year, but feel it’s a super important topic…so I threw it out again. If you read…please write reviews about the books you read. Go HERE to read why (if you haven’t already). You help writers out…and you help other readers who are skimming reviews trying to figure out what books to choose.

And Happy St. Paddy’s Day to you as well. I ran into work this morning and realized when I got there that I had not a speck of green on. It terrified me…so I ran back home and changed. I now have my green going on…so no pinching! Have a great week!

char2a

Cozy Mystery Writer–Linda Clarke

Today I have Linda Clarke here to tell us more about herself and her newest cozy mystery, The Mysterious Doll.

Welcome, Linda. It’s nice to have you on my blog again. I read your first book in this series, Bali Mystery, and notice that a lot of your books are set in exotic locations. Have you visited the places you write about in your stories? Continue reading