Friday, April 27, 2018


The Lady Fugitive

By Ada Brownell

How does a respected elocutionist become a face on a wanted poster?

In 1908 Jenny Louise Parks, 17, escapes from the coal bin, and her abusive uncle offers a handsome reward for her return. Because he is a judge, he will find her or he won’t inherit her parents’ ranch.

Determination to remain free grips Jenny, especially after she meets William O’Casey and there’s a hint of romance. But while traveling around the country peddling household goods and showing one of the first Passion of the Christ moving pictures, William discovers his father’s brutal murder.

Will Jenny avoid the bounty hunters? Can she forgive the person who turns her in?

2015 Laurel Award runner-up. Published by Elk Lake Publishing, a new small Christian traditional publisher.

#Review The Lady Fugitive. You’ll laugh, bite your nails; wish you had a gun to help. Available from Amazon in paper or e-book.

53 Reviews

Tuesday, April 24, 2018



win a f

Transformation: a chronological walk through the Bible in a year

By Donna Schlachter

Have you ever noticed that the voice of God often comes in the most unexpected moments asking the most unexpected things of us? This happened to me early in January of 2017 during my daily reading. Without a doubt, He stood beside me and said, “Write this book”.

Now, normally when God tells me to write a book, I don’t have any problem. I mean, I have so many stories floating around inside my head, I don’t think I’ll live long enough to get them all written down.

So, naturally, I asked, “Which book?”

“This book.”

“This isn’t a book.” Like I need to tell God that, or anything for that matter. “It’s just my daily journal.”

“Yes. That book.”

Honestly, that was the last thing I wanted to hear. Like I said, I have plenty of other books to write without God adding a devotional to the list. But I couldn’t escape the instruction.

So, here are three things I learned while writing this book:

  1. Because it was also my daily reading and quiet time, I had to be honest with my own thoughts, feelings, and understandings, but also be willing to be completely transparent with my reader. In fact, when I transcribed this book into my computer, I only changed about three words, and that’s because I’d written the wrong word in my journal.
  2. I waited until almost the end of the year to transcribe the book. Stupid me. I could have started almost immediately. The lesson learned is never put off what God is telling you to do.
  3. The process of writing a book kept me on track so I couldn’t skip days or skim the reading. At the end of every reading, I asked God what He wanted me to learn, and what He wanted the reader to learn. As a result, I didn’t use any of the “usual” verses we see in devotionals, and God gave me fresh insight every single day.
So this book has been a true transformation for me. The way I read was different; I expected God to show up every day; and I was able to be more real in what I wrote. As I transcribed, I saw days where I was upbeat; days where I was discouraged; days where I was angry. And yet God used every one of those days.

If we let Him loose in our lives, He is faithful to change us—to transform us into His likeness and image.

Answer this question for the opportunity to win a free print (US only) or digital copy of Transformation: How would knowing you were writing a book change the way you journal your quiet time?

About Donna:

Donna lives in Denver with husband Patrick, her first-line editor and biggest fan. She writes historical suspense under her own name, and contemporary suspense under her alter ego of Leeann Betts. She is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Sisters In Crime; facilitates a local critique group, and teaches writing classes and courses. Donna is also a ghostwriter and editor of fiction and non-fiction, and judges in a number of writing contests. She loves history and research, and travels extensively for both. Donna is proud to be represented by Terrie Wolf of AKA Literary Management. Receive a free ebook simply for signing up for our free newsletter!

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Monday, April 16, 2018


Stepping Stones

Sara L. Foust

Five years ago, I had no clue what God had planned for the next phase in my life. I had just turned 30 with three beautiful little girls when I felt an overwhelming call to become a foster parent. It was terrifying. My husband and I completed the training and soon enough we had our first placement, then our second, and then our third. Little did we know at that time our third placement would result in our fourth when her biological half-brother was born. In September 2014, with four children in our home, God impressed upon us to pull our eldest two children from public school and begin homeschooling. I had a lot of support from friends and family, thankfully, because I had no idea what I was doing.

When we brought our newborn son home from the NICU on August 31, 2015, I quickly realized working full-time as a medical transcriptionist from home was no longer going to work. There simply weren’t enough hours in the day or enough coffee in the world to keep my exhausted eyes open. We began to earnestly pray for God to show us what career I should take. It was crystal clear this was the opportunity I’d been longing for my whole life. It was time to write. Not just tinker with the craft. Really write.

It was an amazing and scary time all at once. We went from two full-time incomes to one, cutting our income literally in half, with a new baby and a new mortgage. But God worked out all the details.

By August 2016, our adoption was final and we had a new son and daughter. What a blessed day that was! In the coming months I finished up my first manuscript and, with a lot of prayer, found a publisher who liked my work. In November 2017, Callum’s Compass released. Though we (almost desperately at times) needed the money, I again had an overwhelming sense that God was pressing me to something different. You see, in October I had prayed and cried and prayed about attending a mission trip to the Philippines. And no matter how I tried to talk myself and God out of it, the burden to go would not leave me. I called my friend and mission trip coordinator and told her I would be joining them in April 2018. So the money we had really been waiting for to help with bills, God impressed upon me to donate 100% of sales profits to the mission trip. I’m not going to lie. At first I don’t think I was exactly a “joyful giver.” I was scared. I was worried. But now five months after my debut’s release, I can honestly say it’s been a joy to place the profits toward God’s plan for me on this mission trip.

I can look back now and see how each of the steps from foster parenting to homeschooling to writing full-time to adoption have led to this mission trip. God was putting all the pieces in line so that I could go without worrying about my children missing school, without worrying about taking time off from work (for 2 weeks!), and providing extra money toward the finances needed to go. I am so thankful that I followed His leading, even though at times I didn’t know why He was pushing us toward one direction or another. “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28 KJV. I am reminded every day that God’s plans are not without reason. That His gentle nudgings are not without purpose. He knows what He’s doing, and all we have to do is trust Him enough to follow blindly no matter where the stepping stones lead.

Tag line:         Facing betrayal, wild animals, meth-addled drug makers, and their own fears, can Kat and Ryan discover the golden treasure and God’s love?
Publisher:      Mantle Rock Publishing
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Author Bio:
Sara writes Inspirational Romantic Suspense from a mini-farm in East Tennessee, where she lives with her husband and their five homeschooled children. She earned her Bachelor’s degree in Animal Science from the University of Tennessee and is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers and Tennessee Mountain Writers. Her debut novel Callum's Compass won second place in Deep River Books' 2017 Writer's Contest. She also has a story, “Leap of Faith,” in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone. Sara finds inspiration in her faith, her family, and the beauty of nature. When she isn’t writing, you can find her reading, camping, and spending time outdoors with her family. To learn more about her and her work or to become a part of her email friend’s group, please visit
Medium bio:
Sara writes Inspirational Romantic Suspense from a mini-farm in East Tennessee, where she lives with her husband and their five homeschooled children. She earned her Bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee and is a member of ACFW and Tennessee Mountain Writers. Callum's Compass won second place in Deep River Books' 2017 Writer's Contest.  Sara also has a story, “Leap of Faith,” in Chicken Soup for the Soul: Step Outside Your Comfort Zone. Gain access to a FREE digital scrapbook detailing some real-life places from Callum’s Compass by signing up for her newsletter:

Wednesday, April 4, 2018



By Lillian Duncan


Deception is the first in my Sisters By Choice series. I never planned Deception to be part of a three-book series but it just sort of happened. Each of the Sisters By Choice novels feature courageous women who make the choice to help “a sister”in need in spite of the danger involved.

 Deception features a set of estranged twins that couldn’t be more different from each other or so it seems. Patti is a go-by-the-rulebook type of person while Jamie is a “free spirit” or at least that’s the persona she portrays to the world.

But Deception is the title of the book so there are more than a few surprises waiting for Patti as the story unfolds.

For those of you who aren’t writers, editors love to chop out what they consider as unnecessary scenes. It’s their job so I harbor no ill will toward them. This was the first chapter in my book, but my editor chopped it. However, it makes a great prologue so without further ado…


Jamie glared at the white leather sofa, the plush pristine white carpet, the white walls. Splashes of color from accent pillows provided the only relief from the white. The room was perfect. It could have been featured in House Beautiful.

Jamie detested it. All she wanted was to go back home so her precious daughter could experience a normal childhood and to meet her aunt Patti.

Jamie stopped pacing like a caged tiger and put a hand over her heart. The pain of missing her twin so real she could barely breathe.

It would all end soon—very soon.

Then she could go back home. As much as she wanted to quit right that second, she wouldn’t until the job was finished. Innocent people would die if she quit and she couldn’t live with herself if that happened.

She moved to the sliding glass door leading to her patio and opened it. The steamy Florida air rushed into the coolness of the air-conditioned house. Darkness enveloped her as she stepped out. She inhaled the scent of the tropical flowers adorning her patio.

She welcomed the quiet of the night.

Guilt tugged at Jamie once again. Sabrina deserved a full-time mother, not one who spent a handful of days with her every month. This craziness would soon stop, and then she could make a real home for Sabrina.

It would all end soon—very soon.

She hit a button and the cover of the hot tub slid away. Steam bubbled up. The warm water caressed her skin as she lowered herself into the hot tub. Her muscles relaxed. She had a ton of things to do before she left once again, but she needed this.

A slight rustling in the bushes caught her attention. Jamie turned toward the noise and peered into the darkness. Nothing. Still, she felt a chill in spite of the warmth of the water. Her senses went on alert.

Time to go in.

She stood and turned toward the patio door. Strong arms encircled her from behind. She struggled to break the hold. Too strong. Her training kicked in and she allowed herself to go limp. Her attacker’s arms went slack for a moment.

 It was the moment she needed.

Slipping through his arms, she whirled to face her attacker and in one fluid movement slammed her foot into stomach. The man grunted and fell back. She jumped out of the hot tub, water sloshing over the patio. 

Her gun was in the house. But so was Sabrina.

She turned, running away from the house but then out of the darkness, someone grabbed her…

NOTE: If you right click on the photo you can save it just as if I’d sent it in a separate file. Thanks.

I loved writing the story of Patti and Jamie which is how it ended up being a three book series. Deception (e-book) is on sale for a limited time for only 99 cents or you can buy the complete anthology as well.



Lillian Duncan: stories of faith mingled with murder & mayhem!

Lillian is a multi-published writer with several Amazon bestsellers, including The Christmas Stalking and Game On. Lillian writes the types of books she loves to read—fast-paced suspense with a touch or two of romance that demonstrates God’s love for all of us

Whether as an educator, a writer, or a speech pathologist, she believes in the power of words to transform lives, especially God’s Word. To learn more about Lillian and her books, visit: or at Tiaras & Tennis Shoes, her personal blog at She also has a devotional blog at






Monday, April 2, 2018


By Ada Brownell

Note: This is a true story from the book, What Prayer Can Do
James DeBoer is now a Sunday school officer, and his wife, Ruth, is a Sunday school teacher. To see how greatly they enjoy the services at First Assembly of God Church in Lakewood, Colorado, one would never suspect they used to drink alcohol and quarrel constantly.

Today they are a happy couple and their home a haven of peace, but a few years ago it was anything but that. The children were allowed to smoke and drink any time they wanted. The parents never took them to church.

But a member of Lakewood First Assembly started coming by and giving the children a ride to church. One day she asked the oldest boy what he would like most in all the world. He replied, “I would like my parents to be saved.”

Jim and Ruth talked it over and decided it was time they started going to church for the sake of the family, for they had reached the brink of disaster. They were desperate.

Both of them knew something about the gospel. Ruth had been converted prior to her wedding. She was not living for the Lord, however, when she married Jim. They started writing to each other in 1950 when he served in the Army. After corresponding eight months, Jim made the trip from Colorado to Nebraska to be with her. Three days later he gave her a ring. Four days after that, they were married, and the next day he had to go back to the Army base.

Ruth wasn’t married long when her church had a revival meeting and she rededicated her life to Christ. She was so excited she wrote Jim about it immediately. He was not as thrilled as she was. “Don’t get religion on me now,” he wrote back, bitterness oozing from his words.

Jim could recall when he was age six and his greatest hero was not some famous cowboy, but Moses. He wished he had been named after the great leader of Israel! In his young heart, Jim had a desire to serve God, and he told his mother he wanted to be baptized. She said he was too young. From that time on his attitude toward life was different. Rebellion increased. By the time he was age nine he was such a problem his mother was told he would have to go to a reformatory. Instead she sent him to live on a ranch with an older sister and brother-in-law.

Jim’s brother-in-law let him drink a little whiskey one night. Jim liked the effect. It made him act silly and he thought it was fun, so the next time he had the chance he drank again. By age 16 he bought his own liquor or made it himself. He learned how to make peach brandy, cherry wine, and potato whiskey. He drank so much when he went to bed, he sometimes thought the bed floated in the air—so he got up and tied the bed down.

Then came military training, marriage and overseas service. After his discharge he arrived home to find Ruth still serving the Lord.

“I’m having none of that,” he said.

Every Sunday they fussed because she wanted to go to church and he didn’t.

Jim went to Sunday school with her once, but the teacher knew about his habits and switched from the regular lesson topic to teach about the evils of smoking and drinking. Jim refused to go back.

They quarreled over other things too. When Jim went to the movies, Ruth waited outside in the car. When their first child was born they fussed over how to rear him. Then they fought about Jim’s drinking.

Finally Ruth decided if she would stop going to church maybe peace would come to their home. So she conformed to Jim’s wishes—but this did not solve their problems. If the quarrel pattern changed at all, the quarrels became more frequent.

By May 1961 their lives reached such a crisis point that Jim began to make desperate plans. There was a man he hated. He desired to kill him. The drinking, the quarreling, the frustrations of life had so confused his mind that he focused all his anger on this one enemy. Life had become so meaningless he was willing to trade all hopes of future happiness for one moment of revenge.

He decided he would kill the man, and it would be a brutal murder. That was the kind of treatment Jim felt his enemy deserved. He knew what he would do with the body. When it was all over, he would confess the crime to the authorities. He thought the satisfaction from getting revenge would make it all worthwhile.

One day while at work he meditated on his plans—considering the best way to attack his enemy, when he remembered the Bible says, “Whoever hateth his brother is a murderer,” (1 John 3:15). He knew enough about the Scriptures to realize in God’s sight it is not necessary to commit the deed—the thought alone makes a man guilty in God’s eyes.

Suddenly it seemed Jim could see the crime scene he planned. He was looking into the lifeless face of the man he had killed. The bloody scene in his imagination might have nauseated some people, but the sickness Jim felt was in his soul, not his stomach. A crushing load of sin pressed against his body. The weight seemed more than he could bear. His breath came in gasps. In agony he clinched and unclenched his fists again and again.

A moan escaped his lips, though no one else heard it above the clatter of machinery. “Oh, God,” he cried aloud. “Forgive me!”

Instantly peace and quietness flooded his soul. He felt the load lifted from his back. He had never known the full meaning of salvation, but now he knew he had been forgiven.

When he went home, he read his Bible and prayed again. He read a Scripture portion and prayed every day, but he didn’t tell Ruth.

It was at this time the woman from Lakewood First Assembly told Jim about what his son had said he wanted more than anything in the world.

The boy said, “I would like my parents to be saved.

 Jim and Ruth decided to go to church.

Jim took a stand for Christ—and Ruth rededicated her life to the Savior at church on Sunday morning. They knew what to do with all the beer and liquor in the refrigerator. After church they took it out and dumped it in a creek near their home. But the cigarette habit hung on to Jim for several months. Not until he was baptized with the Holy Spirit in a revival meeting was he delivered from the craving for tobacco. Ruth also received the Baptism in the Holy Spirit one night later.

God made Jim a new man. He found the old hatred for the one he planned to murder was gone. He went to his enemy, made peace with him, and invited him to church. The man attended church a few times, amazed at the change God made in his would-be-murderer.

Jim and Ruth are now students of the Bible. They are faithful in church attendance and active leaders in Sunday school. Jim served on the deacon board for consecutive terms and Ruth is a Missionettes leader.

God snatched them from the brink of disaster and placed them on mountaintops of joy and satisfied living.