Book Spotlight: Axel’s Sunshine: Book 1 of the 7 Mafia Brides for 7 Brothers

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Axel’s Sunshine

Book 1 of the 7 Mafia Brides for 7 Brothers

by Parker J. Cole

Axel's Sunshine

Axel Woodsman heart is broken by the loss of his mother. Deciding to never give his heart to another woman, he is forced to come to the rescue of a group of women being harassed by hateful men in town. When he gazes into the eyes of Olga Popov, the last thing he wants is to be attracted to her…much less kindle his heart with something that feels a lot like love.

Olga Popov runs away from the shattering truth about her father only to find herself being protected by a group of brothers who risk their lives to protect her and her friends. The eldest brother, Axel, draws her interest but she’s already been hurt by the one man she cared about most– her father — and she’s not going to let anyone betray her trust again.

Can two distrustful hearts learn to trust again?

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CrossReads Weekly Devotionals: Everything for a Reason 2/24/2020

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by Ruth O’Neil

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

I believe everything happens for a reason. As human beings we only live for the day to day, but God sees the bigger picture of our lives. Every aspect of our life is in God’s hands. When I skipped eighth grade I had no idea it had anything to do with my mother’s death, but hindsight, being twenty-twenty, I can now see where God had been at work all along. 

I was thrilled to skip from seventh to ninth grade. It was then I met my future husband. We dated for a while and on my sixteenth birthday he gave me a ring. Most parents would put up a fuss about that, but not mine. I was mature and sensible at age sixteen. Our mindset was just because we were engaged didn’t mean we were getting married the following week. 

Over the next few years we made plans for our future. We wanted several children, but only after we had been married for a while and had some time alone together. However, three weeks after our wedding, I found myself sicker than I had ever been in my entire life. I was pregnant. This wasn’t in my plans. We were still in the honeymoon stage of our marriage! I can’t say I was excited when I realized the cause of my illness. But God was at work. 

Our daughter was born three weeks early with no complications whatsoever. My parents enjoyed our baby whenever they had an opportunity to see her. We lived in different states so it was a little difficult sometimes.  

Then, when my daughter was nine months old my mother discovered she had breast cancer. As she grew sicker, our church bought me an airline ticket that allowed me to fly home to see my mother. My daughter was thirteen months old at that time and although my mom couldn’t really hold her much, she watched every movement my daughter made. 

Before our visit, my daughter wasn’t really walking much. It wasn’t that she couldn’t it was more like she wouldn’t. At that point I didn’t know even that little thing was in God’s perfect timing. While we were visiting Grandma, my daughter really began taking her first steps. At first I thought it was because there was a whole new world to explore at Grandma’s house, but three weeks later, my mom passed away. God had blessed my mom by allowing her to see her first grandchild taking her first steps. 

If I had not skipped a grade, I would have graduated a year later, gone to college a year later, got married a year later, and my daughter would have been born a year later. It would have been a year too late for my mother. I know now that God wanted my mom to have the blessing of seeing her first grandchild taking her first steps. 

Next time you are struggling with the why of a circumstance in your life, know that God is at work in you. Sometimes we find out why things happen. Sometimes we don’t. But, one thing is for sure, God knows and it was all in His plan. 

I believe everything happens for a reason!

About the Author:

Ruth OneilRuth O’Neil has been writing for over 20 years. She has published hundreds of articles in numerous publications. She loves to touch the emotions when she writes. “If I can make one person laugh or cry, I’ll consider myself successful.” Her first novel “Come Eat at My Table” has just come out in ebook form and can be purchased on her website. She homeschools her three children (well, one now, as two have graduated). She and her husband have been married for 20-plus years. In her spare time she enjoys quilting, crafting, and reading. You can visit her on her blog at ruths-real-life (dot)blogspot.com or her website at ruthoneil (dot)weebly.com

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Ten Tips to Turn Your Writing into Clear Communication 2/21/2020

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by Carmen Peone

I’ve come to realize writing is nothing more than clear communication whether the piece is fiction and non-fiction. While one may offer a form of entertainment, the other explains or persuades. However, to be effective both types of writing must effectively connect reader to story 

My first tip is to think reader first. Mentors like Jerry Jenkins, editors with Reader’s Digest, and other newspaper editors suggest using plain words that the majority of society would know their meaning. Are the words familiar and rich? Or do the readers stumble over them because they are flamboyant?  

Secondly, It’s fun to create descriptive scenes in fiction. Here’s a fun exercise. Pick any page of your work-in-progress and choose two colors of highlighters. Now, go on a hunt for picture nouns and action verbs. For example, did you use house or shack? How about hit or slap?  

Thirdly, learn to master simple and declarative sentences. Why use twenty-three words when two will work? Jesus’s entire ministry was summed up in two words: “Follow me.” Vary word length of sentences. Jolt the reader’s mind with two or one-word sentences now and again, especially to add tension.  

Two more valuable tips include: keep paragraphs short. Psychologically, readers want more white space on the page. Too many words can be overwhelming, especially in the age of tweets and texts. In addition, remember dialog is action and moves the story forward. Don’t be afraid to use a lot of discussion between characters. It tends to highlight personalities 

A sixth tip is to use an active instead of passive voice? Strong verbs and specific nouns draw readers into the action. For example, which would you rather read: Joan angrily drove to work or Joan stomped on the brakes when the light turned red, slamming her fist against the steering wheel, and shouted, “Not again! He’s gonna fire me.” 

Speaking of dialog, writing like you talk is the seventh tip. Don’t use less than authentic language. If you would never say something, don’t write it. Also avoid shop talk. Not everyone understands it. Don’t try to impress the reader by making them sludge through jargon. Be basic and clear as we don’t all speak the same language. Again, use familiar words so your readers don’t trip over the page. No one wants skinned knees.  

My eighth tip is to think and write clearly. Our job as writers is to clarify so readers don’t have to. If additional research is needed, by all means, do more. Make a call. Find someone to help authenticate your work 

The ninth tip is to revise with time. Let days or months pass by before picking up your article, short story, or novel and giving it a second and third go. Fresh eyes are clear eyes. 

Finally, don’t!, and I mean, don’t! overuse any single point of punctuation!!!!! Punctuation is the season on a dish, not the main course.  

Happy writing!

About the Author:

Carmen PeoneCarmen Peone has lived in Northeast Washington and on the Colville Confederated Indian Reservation since 1988. She had worked with a Tribal Elder, Marguerite Ensminger, for three years learning the Arrow Lakes Language and various cultural traditions. She owns and trains her horses and competes in local Extreme Challenge and Mountain Trail competitions. With a degree in psychology, the thought of writing never entered her mind, until she married her husband and they moved to the reservation after college. With the love of history and western woman lifestyle, she brings stories of hope, family, relationships, and faith to her novels.

These books were a labor of love, especially the second edition of the True to Heart Trilogy. Thank you to my cover model, Shayna Palmanteer of the Colville Confederated Tribes, for your willingness to be a part of this adventure. Visit my website for information on the workbooks that go along with my young adult books at https://carmenpeone.com/books/.
http://carmenpeone.com

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CrossReads Book Spotlight: NOWHERE TO GO

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

NOWHERE TO GO

Christian Orphan Preteen Brothers’ Adventure

in Holy Spirit living, living Green, & Gardening

by R. J. Miller

(Jimmy & Me Book 1)

NOWHERE TO GO

“Nowhere to Go” is a “Box Car Children” meets “The Great Brain” novel. A Box Car Kids meets The Great Brain novel. Christian orphan preteen / teen boys.
Jake and Jimmy Landon are orphaned. They avoid being separated in foster care. Jimmy, a 15-year-old genius decides to keep what’s left of their family together.
The story is told through the eyes of ten-year-old Jake. They’re careful to keep their secret, but how long can they pretend to have a non-existent mother? Or worse, will “Uncle” Jed find out where they live? The constant threat of mayhem is a real possibility.
These two adventurers find their way through various trials. Where will they live? How will they eat and pay for things? Super-natural miracles surround these two as they continue to trust God. Some call it religious, but we know it as a relationship with Jesus Christ. Jake and Jimmy read their Bible and pray, then God’s mystery unfolds. Their discovery of sustainability and green technology rocket their ambition. Men women and middle school kids have grown to love the characters in this amazing story.

“This story is so exciting. It’s so cool how Christ provides for their needs. What an adventure! I had to wipe away a few tears too,” Gordon Miller.
“A down to earth book with a touch of humor and great inventions from household items. When two brothers are faced with a tragic event, they turn to God,” Sharon Seilhymer​.

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CrossReads Short Takes: The Amish Wedding Promise & Seeing Jesus

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CrossReads Short Takes

The Amish Wedding Promise

(Hidden Springs Book 1)

by Laura V. Hilton

The Amish Wedding Promise

Could this bride’s wedding disaster be a blessing in disguise?
Grace Lantz always imagined her wedding day would be a blissfully happy occasion. But after a tornado swept through town, she finds herself relieved that the ceremony is delayed. After all, her groom-to-be hasn’t even bothered to check on her. Instead, it’s the handsome volunteer Zeke Bontrager who selflessly offers Grace his strong shoulders to lean on.
Zeke came to Hidden Springs to assist a community in need. He didn’t expect to meet his soul mate. Determined to ignore his feelings, Zeke promises to help reunite kind, beautiful Grace with her groom. But after spending time together, Grace confesses that she might not want to marry her fiancé after all. Can Zeke convince her that her true love is standing right in front of her? And can she find the courage to follow her heart?

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Seeing Jesus

by Jeffrey McClain Jones

Seeing Jesus

Philly Thompson lives alone with his cat, Irving, in a one-bedroom apartment in Chicago. He worries about his weight, frets about his job, longs to get back with his ex-girlfriend, and wishes his ma would stop nagging him. To you and me, a pretty average guy. To Jesus, the raw material for a miracle . . . or two. When this ordinary guy stumbles into an extraordinary experience, everything seems possible, except staying stuck in that same dull life. Seeing and hearing Jesus right beside him rocks Philly’s world and reaches beyond him to his coworkers, his girlfriends and his family. Too bad no one else can see or hear Jesus there. Will Philly be rejected yet again? Will they just decide that he’s crazier than they imagined? Or will they let Philly’s contact with the Divine lift them out of their suffering and light their lives with hope?

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Love One Another – A Valentine’s Day Blessing 2/18/2020

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by C.J. Peterson

Valentine’s Day sometimes brings heartache to many people. There are those who have lost their one true love over the year, their best friend, or another close family member. We tend to think of Valentine’s Day just being for lovers. I want to challenge that.

In John 13:34- 35, Jesus give us a new commandment: “A new commandment I give unto you, that ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” (KJV)

My thoughts behind this are that we are to love one another, which is true. Now, bear with me while I bring this together. Valentine’s Day is to celebrate the love we have for those close to our hearts…not just our lover. That includes our best friend, a sweet friend from church, a recent widow or widower, that young child in your class who has recently entered foster care, …and the list could go on. We are to love one another, and not just one day a year, but every day.

This year, as some of you may know, Trevor lost one of his close friends, Max. I also lost my dad. Both of them were very close to our hearts…but so were their other halves. So, this year on Valentine’s Day when we celebrated our love for each other, we made sure to include them as well. We called Max’s widow, who is also one of our best friends, and asked her to be our Valentine for this year. She agreed, and her smile brought immediate joy to our hearts. We also called my mom and sister, and asked the same thing. Again, instant joy at their acceptance.

That joy is priceless – to the giver and to the receiver. That joy is a love that has bonded us. As a family in Christ, we need to have that joy and love for all of our Christian family members. Jesus said that by that love, all men know that ye are my disciples.

Are you spreading and sharing that joy? Not just for your significant other, but toward others as well? Just like the light of a candle can be spread to many, the love in your heart can be spread as well. The beauty of spreading that love, is that it comes back to you tenfold! Spread the love not just on Valentine’s Day, but every day. See the grin on the face of that cashier when you give them a smile, and tell them to have a blessed day. See the joy in that young child’s face when you give them the blessing of kind words or even a hug when appropriate. Feel your heart leap when you look after a close friend or best friend when they are down, and you can make them smile and laugh.

“…Love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another. By this all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.” Jon 13:34b-35 (KJV)
Valentines Day Blessing

About the Author:

CJ PetersonI was raised in a Christian military home, but it was far from tranquil. Like many young people, I left home as soon as possible, and went my own way, thinking I knew better. To me anything was better than where I was. Unfortunately, some of the choices I made led me away from the Lord, and sometimes that path was a dangerous one.
God is faithful, even when His children are lost and wandering. When I needed Him most, the Lord was there for me. He led me out of that danger and into a new life…a life where I am loved and appreciated. He taught me what ‘real love’ is, and what it’s supposed to look like through my family and wonderful husband.
Who knew that “Prince Charming” actually existed? I hoped and prayed he was out there, and I found him! He is a 24 year Navy veteran and the love of my life! With his encouragement, I rediscovered the creativity I thought I had lost a long time ago, and have begun to publish the books I have written through the years. The words in these books helped me through my struggles, and my prayer is they will help others.
The way in which I write my Christian Books, is unique to say the least. I am a realistic Christian. People are people, they stumble, they fall, they trip, but God continues to dust us off, and set us back on the path again, if we just learn to trust in Him.
The challenges faced in my past give me a perspective on the realities of living the Christian life that some people may never see. There are times we wander away from God…there are times when we draw closer to Him. In our arrogance we think we can make it on our own. However, the One who made this world, and who made you, has the answers, and thankfully, He forgives our impudence and petulance and loves us through it all. God is a God of love, mercy, grace, and guidance. He loves us and only wants the best for us.
Those who have read my books, describe them as encouraging, frustrating, and a wonderful read all at the same time. The same character that could have you crying one minute, will have you cheering the next! One of my editors, stated that ‘she was so into the story, that she forgot to edit, and had to go back to do the editing’.
I pray you will enjoy my books as well!

While the stories are fiction, the journey is real.

Visit CJ’s websitehttp://cjpetersonwrites.com/

Follow her on FB http://www.facebook.com/writingbycjpeterson

Follow her on Twitterhttp://www.twitter.com/authoress_cj

Follow her on Pinterest http://pinterest.com/authoresscj/

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CrossReads Weekly Devotionals: Gems From Pastor Jim 2/17/2020

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by Jim Hughes

crossJer. 7:24 “But my people would not listen to me. They kept on doing whatever they wanted, following the stubborn desires of their evil hearts. They went backwards instead of forward.”

We need to think about what the Lord is saying to His people here. Although in this context the nation of Israel is being addressed, I believe it applies to us as well.

It is our nature to want to do what we want to do and not what God wants us to do. Ingrained within us is the tendency to be drawn away from God. We naturally want to resist the voice of God that guides us to Him. Whether you are a believer or not, it is true. Our sinful nature left alone will cause us to slip backwards away from God.

Our only hope of resisting our urges is to work hard on our relationship with Christ. We must resist the mindset that once we are saved we can coast our way to heaven. We live by grace, but grace without works is no grace at all. It takes effort to stay connected to God. It is not possible to live in Christ and not be changed. He changes our natural desires to resist and pull away from Him. He changes the very direction of our lives. He changes our desires so that we will listen to Him and not shut Him out. The more we work on developing our ties with the Lord, the quicker our growth will be.

I don’t believe there is any neutral ground upon which we can stand as Christians. We are either growing closer to Christ or we are drifting away from Him. If we are drawing closer to the Lord we are consistently reading and meditating on His Word. We are seeking ways in which we can become who God says we are and need to be. We are seeking ways to apply to life what God tells us to do. We as well are spending time in fellowship with the Lord, talking to Him and worshiping Him.

Listen to the Lord. Let Him draw you closer. Learn from Him. Lean on Him. Let Him have His way with you.

Before and After the Honeymoon

About the Author:

Jim Hughes

Spending his formative years in Ft. Wayne, IN, Jim followed the love of his life to southeast Iowa where they married and have spent the majority of their lives. Jim has pastored several churches throughout his life and has worked many years in local factories to help support his family. The father of two married adult children and one son still at home, Jim is a first-time author.

C Through Marriage came into being through many years of pastoral and life experiences. The book first took on a life of its own over 20 years ago when I sought to address the much publicized moral failures of prominent leaders in the church. In the chapter on Chasity, I include the guideliness that I developed then to protect one’s self from such failures.

I am a firm believer in order to make sense out of life you have to use much common sense. We need to get back to the basics of what has worked for many, many generations. If is isn’t broke, why try to fix it? I strive to return to the basics of what really works in all my writings.

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Ask the Author Podcast conducts candid and insightful interviews with Christian Independent Authors. Ever wanted to know what your favorite authors favorite food is? Want to know what your favorite author does in his/her spare time? You’ll find the answer here each week https://anchor.fm/russell-sherrard

This site contains Third Party Advertising, using online behavioral tracking technology. Some of the links in the post above are affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, we will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, we only recommend products or services we believe will add value to our readers.

FREE eBook Interactive Romans Road American Standard Version This is the ideal and easy way to share the gospel using your Kindle http://bit.ly/2xvdXNY #free

 

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Love Does Not Mean “Give It to Me Now!” 2/14/2020

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by Mary C Findley

pricey presents

Anyone who has ever had children, worked with children, been around children or seen children is very familiar with the expression “he won’t share with me.” Hence the equally familiar response: “Share does not mean, ‘Give it to me now.’”

That same sentiment is also applied to love. We are absolutely drowning in advertisements telling us to buy something for someone to show or prove that we love them. That something might be jewelry (for her), a vehicle (for him) or a toy (for anyone). It might be something as large as a house or as small and insignificant as a box of candy.

Debt does not matter. Just give it to me. Why wait for marriage? Just give it to me. Need or purpose does not matter. I want it and if you love me, then just give it to me.
But this has nothing to do with love. Love is patient and kind. But more importantly, the very definition of love is to give someone what is best for them. And that requires knowing something about a person. Like giving a garment that does not fit is a gift a person cannot use.

Love understands a person well enough to know what is best for them. And usually that will require some waiting. But with some people, love might include encouraging or perhaps even prodding. We often do not know what we are capable of until we push ourselves. And that push, though often unwanted, is frequently an act of love

Love never fails. But when we are thinking of ourselves first, we are not loving. Love means giving what is best for the other person. Even when they do not want it.

Just as a humorous aside, here is a link to a Huffington Post article to help you shop for the billionaire on your gift list:

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/2013/12/03/christmas-rich-gift-guide_n_4376622.html

presents_under_the_christmas_tree

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CrossReads Book Spotlight: Amish Bachelors NEVER Have a Marriage of Convenience:

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CrossReads Book Spotlight

CrossReads Book Spotlight

Amish Bachelors NEVER Have a Marriage of Convenience: Book 1

by Samantha Fisher

Amish Bachelors NEVER Have a Marriage of Convenience

When Sadie can’t make her bakery work after her father passed away, the Bishop threatens to take it from her. When Seth comes along and tries to help her, all it does is cause more problems for her. Can she get past his handsome English exterior to let him help her?

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CrossReads Short Takes: In The Silence & From Dreams to Deliverance

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CrossReads Short Takes

In The Silence

A book/plot that enlightens and inspires

by James Andrew Edske

In The Silence

David and Paul childhood friends all through high school part ways for more than twenty years. Both served in Vietnam, Paul as a foot soldier and David stationed out of harm’s way as an electronic technician. Their lives take up again when Paul, now a priest flies out to Colorado to confront David with some life-threatening news. It seems that not even prayer can help Paul find the forgiveness he is seeking. But, it is David that is in harm’s way, ever since he unlawfully obtained a Clipper Chip decoder box. The little black box contained the MYK78T integrated circuit (IC), the National Security Agency secretly developed to ease drop and unscrambled encrypted messages over telephone lines, just before the end of the Cold War in 1991.

Footnote: The US government claims to have declassified the Skipjack algorithm used in the chip set for the Chipper Chip Decoder box. If that were true, why then do hackers still use an 80-bit key and a symmetric cipher algorithm when they ransom computers? Don’t believe everything the government claims to be true…

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From Dreams to Deliverance

Strange Dreams, Meanings, Specific Psalms and Acidic Prayer Points

That Triggers Divine Solutions

by Pastor (Dr) Ademola Borode

 

FROM DREAMS TO DELIVERANCE

This book is for those who are spiritually inclined and want to learn more about their dreams, the spiritual realm and the extent to which it affects and controls their physical existence and purpose in life. The book is available in both Paperback and Amazon Kindle version. I’m sure it would be a blessing to you too as it has been to others. Please try and order a copy on Amazon and help recommend it to your friends too . Shalom

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