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Top Ten Winter Activities with author Marlene M Bell... celebrating the release of SCATTERED LEGACY!

Top Ten Winter Activities with author Marlene M Bell... celebrating the release of SCATTERED LEGACY!


On Tour with Prism Book Tours
 
We're celebrating the release of the third book in the Annalisse series, Scattered Legacy! Today, we learn author Marlene M Bell's Top Ten activities for winter.  If you missed her author interview, you can read that HERE. She also shared an excerpt from the book HERE. Plus, there's an awesome 3-winner giveaway to enter below. Enjoy!

Scattered Legacy
(Annalissa Series #3)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery, Christian Fiction
Paperback & ebook, 352 Pages
October 6, 2021 by Ewephoric Publishing

To outsiders, the relationship between Manhattan antiquities assessor Annalisse Drury and sports car magnate Alec Zavos must look carefree and glamorous. In reality, it’s a love affair regularly punctuated by treasure hunting, action-packed adventure, and the occasional dead body.

When Alec schedules an overseas trip to show Annalisse his mother's birthplace in Bari, Italy, he squeezes in the high-stakes business of divesting his family’s international corporation. But things go terribly wrong as murder makes its familiar reappearance in their lives – and this time it’s Alec’s disgraced former CFO who’s the main suspect.

Accompanied by friend and detective Bill Drake, Annalisse and Alec find themselves embroiled in a behind-closed-doors conspiracy that threatens the reputation and legacy of Alec’s late father – linking him to embezzlement, extortion, and the dirty business of the Sicilian Mafia. The search for the truth sends the trio straight into riddles, secrets, and an historic set of rosary beads. Annalisse leads Alec toward a discovery that is unthinkable, and events that will change their futures forever.

(Affiliate links included.)

Scattered Legacy Book Trailer
 

Other Books in the Series

Stolen Obsession
(Annalissa Series #1)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 294 Pages
January 12, 2018 by Ewephoric Publishing

People die, but legends live on.

New York antiquities appraiser Annalisse Drury recently lost her best friend to murder. The killer’s identity may be linked to her friend’s expensive missing bracelet—a 500-year-old artifact that carries an ancient curse, one that unleashes evil upon any who dare wear the jewelry created for the Persian royal family.

Weeks later, Annalisse sees a matching necklace at a Manhattan gallery opening. She begs the owner to destroy the cursed piece, but her pleas fall on deaf ears—despite the unnatural death that occurs during the opening. With two victims linked to the jewelry, Annalisse is certain she must act.

Desperate, Annalisse enlists the gallery owner’s son to help—even though she’s afraid he’ll break her heart. Wealthy and devastatingly handsome, with a string of bereft women in his wake, Greek playboy Alec Zavos dismisses Annalisse’s concerns—until his parents are ripped from the Zavos family yacht during their ocean voyage near Crete.

Annalisse and Alec race across two oceans to save his mother, feared dead or kidnapped. When the killer changes tactics and goes after Alec behind Annalisse’s back, can her plan to rescue Alec’s mother save them all?

(Affiliate links included.)
 
Spent Identity
(Annalissa Series #2)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 378 Pages
November 18, 2019 by Ewephoric Publishing

To find her missing aunt, she has to unearth the secrets of the past. But lies and deceit run through the very heart of their town…

What started out as a promising relationship with adventurer and tycoon Alec Zavos has fizzled into an uncertain future for antiquities expert Annalisse Drury. Returning to Walker Farm in Upstate New York to see her Aunt Kate should have been a welcome homecoming and distraction. Instead, she finds the childhood home she expected to inherit is for sale, without her permission. What’s worse, Kate’s ranch manager makes a gruesome discovery in the barn: the body of a man, dead by foul play.

Annalisse turns to Alec for help. She and her aunt shelter on his estate in the Catskills while the authorities canvass the scene. But when Kate herself disappears without a trace, Annalisse fears the worst: that one of the many secrets of her hometown has ensnared her family—a secret someone is willing to kill for to keep hidden.

(Affiliate links included.)

Marlene M Bell's Top 10 Favorite Things to Do in Winter

· Sit in front of a fire in our new library and read mysteries with Leo.

· Binge shop on the Etsy website to help other entrepreneurs.

· Take photographs of our Horned Dorset sheep and surrounding landscape.

· Sit in front of my personal computer and write when it’s raining.

· Set up giveaways for my Facebook friends who read, write and raise sheep.

· Watch feel-good movies on the Hallmark channels with my husband.

· Buy research books for novels to write, new characters, scenes and plots.

· Design punch hook rug patterns for my huge yarn collection

· Browse my cookbook collection and cook a gourmet meal for my husband.

· Photograph nature and wildlife while my husband fishes for bass in the pond. No too far out, though. We have wild hogs about that think nothing of coming after people who venture where they’re rooting.

This is just a list in no particular order. All ten situations are my favorite things do in the winter during downtime when the trees lose their leaves and the air turns crisp. We raise sheep, so this involves a certain amount of outdoor activity when the animals are fed twice a day. I’m a photographer and artist seeking out beautiful sunsets and cloudy skies to use in my catalog business. Many of the pictures taken contribute to the merchandise offered to our sheep clients and collectors of everything sheep and lamb.

I’m also a catalog shopping maniac. Back in the 1980’s when eBay began as a marketplace, I purchased sheep related gifts and eventually sold my own work there. I hoard mail order catalogs and frequently purchase all over the world for our home. Vintage or new products eventually land in our home, especially if they involve a sheep. As my business and publishing company says, I am Ewephoric about sheep and writing. https://www.ewephoric.us It’s all about hobbies and the outdoors for me. In a time when we are stuck inside our homes, I’m fortunate to roam our fifty acres and spend time with the wildlife. Because we raise animals as part of the food chain, I’m able to travel as needed. The cats, Leo and Hollywood make sure that I’m not gone from the house too long!

About the Author


Marlene M. Bell is an award-winning writer and acclaimed artist as well as a photographer. Her sheep landscapes grace the covers of livestock magazines such as, The Shepherd, Ranch & Rural Living, and Sheep Industry News. She has a mystery series available as well as a children's book featuring their bottle lamb, Natalie. Marlene and her husband, Gregg, reside in beautiful East Texas on a wooded ranch with their horned Dorset sheep, a large Maremma guard dog named Tia, along with Hollywood, Leo, and Squeaks, the cats that believe they rule the household—and do.


Tour Giveaway


GRAND PRIZE
A Nicole Miller 50 x 60 inch ultra-soft throw in neutral colors
A signed copy of Scattered Legacy by Marlene M Bell
Two (2) 18 oz. mugs. One says: GRATEFUL the other, BLESSED
Box of 15 Ghirardelli Hot Chocolate Mix

2nd place winner: A signed copy of Scattered Legacy
by Marlene M Bell
3rd place winner: A signed copy of Scattered Legacy
by Marlene M Bell

US Only
Ends January 22, 2022

 
Grab Our Button!

Read more »
Heidi Reads...
0 Comments
Read an excerpt from SCATTERED LEGACY, the third book in the Annalisse series by Marlene M Bell

Read an excerpt from SCATTERED LEGACY, the third book in the Annalisse series by Marlene M Bell


On Tour with Prism Book Tours
 
We're celebrating the release of the third book in the Annalisse series, Scattered Legacy! Today, author Marlene M Bell shares an excerpt from the book. If you missed her author interview, you can read that HERE. Next, we learn the author's Top Ten activities for winter. Plus, there's an awesome 3-winner giveaway to enter below. Enjoy!
 
Scattered Legacy
(Annalissa Series #3)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery, Christian Fiction
Paperback & ebook, 352 Pages
October 6, 2021 by Ewephoric Publishing

To outsiders, the relationship between Manhattan antiquities assessor Annalisse Drury and sports car magnate Alec Zavos must look carefree and glamorous. In reality, it’s a love affair regularly punctuated by treasure hunting, action-packed adventure, and the occasional dead body.

When Alec schedules an overseas trip to show Annalisse his mother's birthplace in Bari, Italy, he squeezes in the high-stakes business of divesting his family’s international corporation. But things go terribly wrong as murder makes its familiar reappearance in their lives – and this time it’s Alec’s disgraced former CFO who’s the main suspect.

Accompanied by friend and detective Bill Drake, Annalisse and Alec find themselves embroiled in a behind-closed-doors conspiracy that threatens the reputation and legacy of Alec’s late father – linking him to embezzlement, extortion, and the dirty business of the Sicilian Mafia. The search for the truth sends the trio straight into riddles, secrets, and an historic set of rosary beads. Annalisse leads Alec toward a discovery that is unthinkable, and events that will change their futures forever.

(Affiliate links included.)

 
Scattered Legacy Book Trailer
 


Other Books in the Series

Stolen Obsession
(Annalissa Series #1)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 294 Pages
January 12, 2018 by Ewephoric Publishing

People die, but legends live on.

New York antiquities appraiser Annalisse Drury recently lost her best friend to murder. The killer’s identity may be linked to her friend’s expensive missing bracelet—a 500-year-old artifact that carries an ancient curse, one that unleashes evil upon any who dare wear the jewelry created for the Persian royal family.

Weeks later, Annalisse sees a matching necklace at a Manhattan gallery opening. She begs the owner to destroy the cursed piece, but her pleas fall on deaf ears—despite the unnatural death that occurs during the opening. With two victims linked to the jewelry, Annalisse is certain she must act.

Desperate, Annalisse enlists the gallery owner’s son to help—even though she’s afraid he’ll break her heart. Wealthy and devastatingly handsome, with a string of bereft women in his wake, Greek playboy Alec Zavos dismisses Annalisse’s concerns—until his parents are ripped from the Zavos family yacht during their ocean voyage near Crete.

Annalisse and Alec race across two oceans to save his mother, feared dead or kidnapped. When the killer changes tactics and goes after Alec behind Annalisse’s back, can her plan to rescue Alec’s mother save them all?

(Affiliate links included.)
 
Spent Identity
(Annalissa Series #2)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 378 Pages
November 18, 2019 by Ewephoric Publishing

To find her missing aunt, she has to unearth the secrets of the past. But lies and deceit run through the very heart of their town…

What started out as a promising relationship with adventurer and tycoon Alec Zavos has fizzled into an uncertain future for antiquities expert Annalisse Drury. Returning to Walker Farm in Upstate New York to see her Aunt Kate should have been a welcome homecoming and distraction. Instead, she finds the childhood home she expected to inherit is for sale, without her permission. What’s worse, Kate’s ranch manager makes a gruesome discovery in the barn: the body of a man, dead by foul play.

Annalisse turns to Alec for help. She and her aunt shelter on his estate in the Catskills while the authorities canvass the scene. But when Kate herself disappears without a trace, Annalisse fears the worst: that one of the many secrets of her hometown has ensnared her family—a secret someone is willing to kill for to keep hidden.

(Affiliate links included.)

Excerpt

The reception area is completely empty, and there’s a smell like metal in damp dirt circulating overhead. Farther in, the ceiling fan is hovering on high speed, and the windows are open.

A dead body inside a warm office leaves an unmistakable odor behind, as did the body Ethan found inside the stall at Walker Farm. Decomp is one smell that sticks with you forever. Adding to the office creepiness, who chose the interior’s decor? We’re surrounded by limestone walls painted an ugly shade of ochre, slightly more yellow and definitely more unappealing than the building’s exterior. The rooms will need another coat of fresh paint to cover a harsh stench known to stick to the walls like cigarette tar does.

No one is nearby, not even the receptionist.

The office cubicles are silent but for a few flapping papers. Not a single desk phone is ringing. It’s like the office decided to have a fire drill midday, and the employees left their computers on and didn’t bother to close folders—open to anyone passing by. Frames holding pictures of sweethearts and children stand by as guardians for the people who are absent from their high-back swivel chairs.

Officer Raffa returns and mutters in heavy Italian brogue, “Il signore is waiting for his… avvocato difensore.” He points to the room with a closed door. “Come, Mr. Zavos. Your friends stay here.”

“Josh is in there waiting for his defense attorney. Back soon.” Alec touches my arm and looks at Bill, sending him a private message.

Alec’s led to a side office, and the solid door closes behind them.

“Is Alec signing autographs, or should I even worry about what’s going on in that room? Has Josh been here the entire time messing with evidence?” I ask Bill.

“Alec’s prepared for all contingencies. I’m surprised they haven’t taken Jennings down to the station by now.”

A few minutes later, Alec emerges by himself. “They weren’t going to allow us to talk to Josh, but I persuaded him. It shouldn’t be much longer.”

For what feels like an eternity, we sit in ladderback pine chairs with brown cushions while Alec keeps adjusting his watch. I don’t know what Alec had to promise the officer. Autographs are fine with me, but if he had to pay him off, I’d rather not know.

“I hope Brad is parked in the shade somewhere.” Alec looks at his watch for the eighth time in twenty minutes and turns to me. “Now that we’re here, they seem to be in no hurry to get rid of us. I’m sorry, Anna. Hold on a little longer.” His smile is an honest one full of regret.

I’ve heard the sentiment from him so often it doesn’t even register with my brain anymore. We both have a lot of work to do in the I-promise-to-do-better department.

The closed door at the back wall opens, and a guy pokes his head out, surveying the room. He’s fiftyish and, with his reading glasses, reminds me of Gen’s studious accountant.

Alec pivots, and his earlier smile vanishes.

“That’s Jennings,” Bill says quietly.

“Yes.” Alec waves to draw the man’s attention.

A confused Josh looks at us and then the floor as if he’s embarrassed. Eventually he settles his eyes on Alec. “I wasn’t sure you’d come. My attorney should be here soon. Come back to the conference room.”

Bill asks Alec, “Is it okay to go on ahead?”

Alec must have compensated the officer well to allow us entry this close to the crime scene.

“Let’s get this over with.” Alec seems queasy.

The three of us move through the aisle between desks and toward the room with a door left open for us. Josh has already gone inside. For someone who wants Alec’s help, he sure doesn’t appear happy or grateful for his effort. A huge effort. This had better not be Josh’s way of buying himself out of the woman’s death. The disgrace of being fired from Signorile after Pearce’s tragedy has to hurt his pride.

There’s news of a deadly virus moving through Europe, and the typical handshake is no longer being used between business execs.

Bill lifts his arm and catches himself. “Mr. Jennings? My name is Bill Drake, an associate of Mr. Zavos. You’ve asked to see him, and we also have some questions for you on another matter.”

“Wonderful.” The man in a sweaty, slept-in polo isn’t thrilled with us staring him down. There’s frost in the room as testosterone flies between glances. No one wants to be the first to break the sheet of ice forming around the presumed blue-eyed killer. Alec hasn’t made any assumptions yet until we talk to him, but Josh’s cool facade feels calculated to me. A superior to Alec, or something like that. For an innocent, I don’t like his peculiar behavior in the presence of a man who’s here to keep his neck from a noose.

“I asked to see Alec. Who are the rest of you?”

He’s behind a chair, using it as a shield to save himself from a CEO who wants to take his livelihood from him again. Or is it because he’s guilty of ending a woman’s life?

Alec pulls out the chair for me, and we all sit at the long conference table with a fancy letter F embellished in the center.

Josh’s temples bead with sweat, and he’s wringing his hands next to a wool felt fedora hat with a band. They seem to be popular in Italy. The guy’s bloodshot eyes and dark circles are sure signs of insomnia and stressing to the max. Wet ovals hang beneath the armpits of his beige shirt.

Alec’s unshakable gaze lands on Jennings, who abruptly turns away.

This meeting isn’t opening well.

Bill addresses Josh. “We don’t have a lot of time. Authorities aren’t thrilled with us questioning you, but they were… let’s say, swayed. Tell us what happened here?”

“She was tied and tortured in my office after I left night before last. I opened the building in the morning at seven and found her lying on her side, strapped to a chair and wrapped in wire near my desk. Lots of blood.” Josh holds a paper towel over his mouth, then uses it to wipe away perspiration. “When I left the building, she was in the conference room. I have no idea how she ended up in the office. Maybe the cat went in there.” He slides the fedora into his lap.

“Who is she?” Alec asks.

“Benita Alvarez.” 

Excerpted from Scattered Legacy by Marlene M Bell, Copyright © 2022 by Marlene M Bell. Published by Ewephoric Publishing.

About the Author


Marlene M. Bell is an award-winning writer and acclaimed artist as well as a photographer. Her sheep landscapes grace the covers of livestock magazines such as, The Shepherd, Ranch & Rural Living, and Sheep Industry News. She has a mystery series available as well as a children's book featuring their bottle lamb, Natalie. Marlene and her husband, Gregg, reside in beautiful East Texas on a wooded ranch with their horned Dorset sheep, a large Maremma guard dog named Tia, along with Hollywood, Leo, and Squeaks, the cats that believe they rule the household—and do.


Tour Giveaway


GRAND PRIZE
A Nicole Miller 50 x 60 inch ultra-soft throw in neutral colors
A signed copy of Scattered Legacy by Marlene M Bell
Two (2) 18 oz. mugs. One says: GRATEFUL the other, BLESSED
Box of 15 Ghirardelli Hot Chocolate Mix

2nd place winner: A signed copy of Scattered Legacy
by Marlene M Bell
3rd place winner: A signed copy of Scattered Legacy
by Marlene M Bell

US Only
Ends January 22, 2022

 
Grab Our Button!

Read more »
Heidi Reads...
0 Comments
An interview with author Marlene M Bell... in celebration of the release of SCATTERED LEGACY!

An interview with author Marlene M Bell... in celebration of the release of SCATTERED LEGACY!


On Tour with Prism Book Tours
 
We're celebrating the release of the third book in the Annalisse series, Scattered Legacy! Today, we interview author Marlene M Bell. Next, she shares an excerpt from the book. On the final day, we learn the author's Top Ten activities for winter. Plus, there's an awesome 3-winner giveaway to enter below. Enjoy!

Scattered Legacy
(Annalissa Series #3)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery, Christian Fiction
Paperback & ebook, 352 Pages
October 6, 2021 by Ewephoric Publishing

To outsiders, the relationship between Manhattan antiquities assessor Annalisse Drury and sports car magnate Alec Zavos must look carefree and glamorous. In reality, it’s a love affair regularly punctuated by treasure hunting, action-packed adventure, and the occasional dead body.

When Alec schedules an overseas trip to show Annalisse his mother's birthplace in Bari, Italy, he squeezes in the high-stakes business of divesting his family’s international corporation. But things go terribly wrong as murder makes its familiar reappearance in their lives – and this time it’s Alec’s disgraced former CFO who’s the main suspect.

Accompanied by friend and detective Bill Drake, Annalisse and Alec find themselves embroiled in a behind-closed-doors conspiracy that threatens the reputation and legacy of Alec’s late father – linking him to embezzlement, extortion, and the dirty business of the Sicilian Mafia. The search for the truth sends the trio straight into riddles, secrets, and an historic set of rosary beads. Annalisse leads Alec toward a discovery that is unthinkable, and events that will change their futures forever.

(Affiliate links included.)
 
Scattered Legacy Book Trailer
 

Other Books in the Series

Stolen Obsession
(Annalissa Series #1)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 294 Pages
January 12, 2018 by Ewephoric Publishing

People die, but legends live on.

New York antiquities appraiser Annalisse Drury recently lost her best friend to murder. The killer’s identity may be linked to her friend’s expensive missing bracelet—a 500-year-old artifact that carries an ancient curse, one that unleashes evil upon any who dare wear the jewelry created for the Persian royal family.

Weeks later, Annalisse sees a matching necklace at a Manhattan gallery opening. She begs the owner to destroy the cursed piece, but her pleas fall on deaf ears—despite the unnatural death that occurs during the opening. With two victims linked to the jewelry, Annalisse is certain she must act.

Desperate, Annalisse enlists the gallery owner’s son to help—even though she’s afraid he’ll break her heart. Wealthy and devastatingly handsome, with a string of bereft women in his wake, Greek playboy Alec Zavos dismisses Annalisse’s concerns—until his parents are ripped from the Zavos family yacht during their ocean voyage near Crete.

Annalisse and Alec race across two oceans to save his mother, feared dead or kidnapped. When the killer changes tactics and goes after Alec behind Annalisse’s back, can her plan to rescue Alec’s mother save them all?

(Affiliate links included.)
 
Spent Identity
(Annalissa Series #2)
By Marlene M Bell
Mystery
Paperback, Audiobook & ebook, 378 Pages
November 18, 2019 by Ewephoric Publishing

To find her missing aunt, she has to unearth the secrets of the past. But lies and deceit run through the very heart of their town…

What started out as a promising relationship with adventurer and tycoon Alec Zavos has fizzled into an uncertain future for antiquities expert Annalisse Drury. Returning to Walker Farm in Upstate New York to see her Aunt Kate should have been a welcome homecoming and distraction. Instead, she finds the childhood home she expected to inherit is for sale, without her permission. What’s worse, Kate’s ranch manager makes a gruesome discovery in the barn: the body of a man, dead by foul play.

Annalisse turns to Alec for help. She and her aunt shelter on his estate in the Catskills while the authorities canvass the scene. But when Kate herself disappears without a trace, Annalisse fears the worst: that one of the many secrets of her hometown has ensnared her family—a secret someone is willing to kill for to keep hidden.

(Affiliate links included.)

Interview with author Marlene M Bell

For those interested in exploring the subject or theme of your book, where should they start? 
 
The best place to start is at the beginning with book one, Stolen Obsession. Annalisse’s love interest is a Greek/Italian-American. With his ancestry, this gave me plenty of places to take my main characters. Book one- Greece and Turkey. Book two- upstate New York and Massachusetts. And book three- Italy. Alec comes from a wealthy background and the main character, Annalisse is more upper middle-class. This makes for an interesting comparison brewing in their relationship.

How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your book? 
 
I am of Italian ancestry, and thought characters of a similar background would be fun to research. In early drafts of the first book, Alec was not a good guy. The book was set up more like women’s fiction. By draft four, my editor recommended it would be easier to write this male character if he were a good guy instead of evil in his deeds. We altered the character, changed Stefan’s name, and I softened up the characterization.
 
What were your goals and intentions in this book, and how well do you feel you achieved them? 
 
By book three, the main characters are showing their personalities and all the flaws clearly. Book one, Stolen Obsession was supposed to be a standalone book, not a series. Because there were so many sub-plots, it was decided that those plots would be additional books. It was the best thing that happened to my character, Annalisse. This also gives me time to simmer on each installment and move the couple around the globe.

What did you enjoy most about writing this book?
 
 
The book takes place in Bari, Italy, my maternal grandfather’s home town. The research took me to his childhood home until he left there at the age of 16 for his trip to America. Grandpa was born in 1893 and came over by ship, entering through Ellis Island. The research gave me an opportunity to see firsthand what his life was like as a child. 

Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in Scattered Legacy? 
 
Annalisse Drury is an antiquities valuator from the Manhattan area. She is partners with her love interest’s mother, Generosa Zavos. Alec Zavos is a wealthy tycoon taking over the family sportscar business following his father’s death. (book one) His notoriety and reputation is a stumbling block for Annalisse throughout the series. Generosa Zavos is of Italian background and she is a colorful, mothering individual trying her darndest to get Alec and Annalisse married off so that she can have grandchildren. Anna isn’t sure she wants kids of her own. There is a detective friend, Bill Drake, who accompanies them on hunts for clues in various murder situations. (Books two and three.) Bradley is Alec’s chauffer and personal body guard. He is from London with a Britty quirkiness to him. Bradley goes with Anna and Alec to Italy in Scattered Legacy, as does Bill Drake. There are a few more characters that will make another resurgence in book four.

If you could spend the day with one of the characters from Scattered Legacy, who would it be? Please tell us why you chose this particular character, where you would go and what you would do. 
 
I would have to choose Bill Drake, their detective friend from Florida. He’s an unassuming person with a past that hasn’t totally been revealed yet. More on that in book four. Bill is single, thoughtful, professional and will become a good friend to Annalisse in the next book. I would like to go to his home away from home, the Florida Keys to understand how he went from being a fireman to a detective working for his friend, Alec Zavos. There’s a history and friendship with him and Alec that needs to be explored further. If I were to get Bill alone, I could quiz the heck out of him!

Can you tell us a little bit about your next books or what you have planned for the future? 
 
Book four will land Annalisse into another country, leaving Alec behind, The ending of Scattered Legacy will explain their situation in the next book. Anna will meet up with some old characters from a previous book when her trip takes her to the South Island of New Zealand. There, she will be introduced to raising sheep at a New Zealand sheep station…and she’ll get into more trouble, of course!

How long have you been writing? 
 
I started writing later in life. My first book was published in 2009, based on our experience with sheep.

Anything you would like to say to your readers and fans? 
 
If you’ve read the Annalisse series to date, you know that I like to color outside the lines. My mysteries are complicated and filled with other genre material like romance, adventure and thriller/suspense. If you’re someone who likes to be taken on a thrill ride you’ll want to stick with the series until the end. I don’t know where the end is yet, so hang on to that thought. My writing is based upon my background in raising sheep and living in a ranch environment. Alec studies to become a veterinarian, and Annalisse is brought up to appreciate livestock and ranch living, also. To those who’ve read my books, thank you for reading the series and your thoughtful reviews. I also write children’s books. If you’d like to venture into my picture book, check out: Mia and Nattie: One Great Team!

About the Author


Marlene M. Bell is an award-winning writer and acclaimed artist as well as a photographer. Her sheep landscapes grace the covers of livestock magazines such as, The Shepherd, Ranch & Rural Living, and Sheep Industry News. She has a mystery series available as well as a children's book featuring their bottle lamb, Natalie. Marlene and her husband, Gregg, reside in beautiful East Texas on a wooded ranch with their horned Dorset sheep, a large Maremma guard dog named Tia, along with Hollywood, Leo, and Squeaks, the cats that believe they rule the household—and do.

 
Tour Giveaway


GRAND PRIZE
A Nicole Miller 50 x 60 inch ultra-soft throw in neutral colors
A signed copy of Scattered Legacy by Marlene M Bell
Two (2) 18 oz. mugs. One says: GRATEFUL the other, BLESSED
Box of 15 Ghirardelli Hot Chocolate Mix

2nd place winner: A signed copy of Scattered Legacy
by Marlene M Bell
3rd place winner: A signed copy of Scattered Legacy
by Marlene M Bell

US Only
Ends January 22, 2022

 
Grab Our Button!

Read more »
Heidi Reads...
0 Comments
We're blitzing about HESITANT HEROES by Sharon René!

We're blitzing about HESITANT HEROES by Sharon René!


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Hesitant Heroes
(Divine Destiny #1)
By Sharon René
Young Adult, Christian, Dystopian
Paperback & ebook, 336 Pages
September 7, 2021 by Anaiah Press

In a future where the planet is ruled by the powerful Global Collective Council, and religion is outlawed, Jordan Scott is chosen to attend Global Collective University because of her phenomenal computer skills. Shy and insecure, she has difficulty fitting in with the intelligent, worldly teens at GCU. She joins a secret Bible study and meets Matthew Thomas, a good-looking jock with a big heart. Jordan’s relationship with Matthew grows deeper, and she even manages to bond with her cranky roommate while growing closer to her fellow teammates. 
 
When Christian students mysteriously start disappearing from campus, Jordan stumbles upon the shocking truth—these students are pawns in a government plot, and she’s next on their list. Suddenly, she’s forced into a leadership position as she and her teammates journey from the European Alps to the jungles of Venezuela in a race to save the missing students and stop a political assassination. Fighting fears that have haunted her for years, Jordan battles with the strongest political force on the planet. She believes God placed her at GCU for “such a time as this.” Jordan will have to rely on her faith and friends to save the missing students and foil the evil government.

(Affiliate links included.)
 
Author Thoughts on Quote from Hesitant Heroes by Sharon René

Hello. I’d like to share one of my favorite quotes from Hesitant Heroes.

Jordan Scott and her friends (Team Seven) have become entangled in a dangerous political scheme of kidnapping and assassination. Jordan is emotionally exhausted and ready to give up, but her roommate Hannie won’t let her.

In this scene, Jordan has thrown herself across her bed and told Hannie she was quitting. No more sneaking around and putting herself in danger. Hannie argues that she can’t quit but her arguments don’t work until she says:

“God put you here, didn’t He? Even He knows you’re a born leader.”

Could Hannie be right? Had God placed her at GCU for such a time as this?

Hannie sighed her breath heavy with the scent of spearmint gum. “Jordan, you’re the Queen Esther of Team Seven.”

Why would Hannie mention Queen Esther? She never talked about God. Jordan wasn’t sure Hannie even believed in God. She’d never been to one of their Bible studies and she didn’t know that Esther was one of Jordan’s favorite Bible stories.

Are you trying to tell me something God?

Through the book Jordan has believed that God placed Team Seven at GCU “for such a time as this,” but she never suspected Hannie would feel the same way.

When Hannie brings up Queen Esther Jordan knows that God is sending her the encouragement she needs to continue down an extremely dangerous path.

“For such a time as this” is the theme that runs through Hesitant Heroes. I believe God has placed every one of us in a certain place at a certain time for a certain mission.

This is not always easy to believe. As a teen I hated living in a small town. I’ve always been a city girl at heart. I didn’t understand why God had put me there. I’ve had many ups and downs in my career. I thought I wanted to work in broadcasting but that was a disaster, then I ended up working in a corporate legal department which I enjoy. I’ve always been an introvert, but God led me to teach youth Bible fellowship classes and participate in mission trips and prison ministry.

God engineers our lives.

Can you relate? Are you a teen who hates your school? Perhaps you hate the city you live in, or your marriage is not the romantic dream you hoped for. At times like this it’s hard to believe that God has put us in a certain place “for such a time as this.”

I hope Hesitant Heroes will help readers understand that God doesn’t always place us in beautiful, calm environments. Queen Esther lived in a pagan culture and was married to a pagan king. (Not great husband material). In Hesitant Heroes, Jordan, and her friends, Team Seven, must risk their lives to rescue their kidnapped friends and stop an assassination. Nothing easy about that!

I pray that readers draw strength from Hannie’s words and Jordan’s belief that God does have a special purpose for each one of us. We just need to ask God to direct us and show us what He wants us to do for Him in “such a time as this.”

About the Author


Sharon René loves to write young adult and children’s fiction. Her young adult speculative trilogy has been acquired by Anaiah Press and the first book, Hesitant Heroes, released in September 2021. Hesitant Heroes is an exciting blend of danger, drama and a little romance. Relentless Rebels is scheduled to launch in March 2022. Her first book, A Mixed Bag of God’s Grace, was published in 2018 by TouchPoint Press. This is a book of short stories and devotions for elementary aged children.

Tour Giveaway


One winner will receive a signed print copy of Hesitant Heroes by Sharon René (US only)

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We're launching the Book Tour for SEARCHING FOR HOME by Jill Weatherholt

We're launching the Book Tour for SEARCHING FOR HOME by Jill Weatherholt


On Tour with Prism Book Tours

Author Interview

What inspired you to write Searching for Home?

A good friend of mine used to a professional barrel racer. She would tell me stories about competing and my brain started churning with ideas.

What do you love most about this story?

I fell in love with Tucker, Tilly and Tia, the triplets. I had so much fun writing their characters.

What challenged you about writing it?

I think the most challenging part about writing this story was peeling myself off of YouTube. I spent hours watching videos of Mutton Busting. If you’re ever having a down day, I highly recommend watching a couple videos. They are guaranteed to make you smile.

What character do you relate to and why?

I probably could relate the most to Meg. It’s difficult for her to accept help from others. Like Meg, I often try to do things or fix things myself. My father always said I was “bull-headed.”

What do you hope readers will take away after reading it?

Stability was the theme that echoed throughout this story. Both Meg and Luke longed for stable lives, but neither knew the best way to achieve it. I hope readers will realize that trusting God during challenging times in our life can provide that peace and stability. We can have that peace in knowing God is never unstable.

What do you enjoy doing when you’re not writing?


I love to spend time with my family, in particular my mother. She has Alzheimer’s Disease, so these days, spending as much time as possible with her is my number one priority.

Searching for Home
By Jill Weatherholt
Contemporary, Inspirational Romance
Paperback & ebook, 224 Pages
December 28, 2021 by Love Inspired

When injured professional bull rider Luke Beckett returns to his hometown to recover, he doesn’t expect his B and B host and physical therapist to be his first and only love, Meg Brennan. He’s also unprepared for Meg’s adorable triplets to steal his heart. Luke’s past has him doubting he’s good enough for Meg and the children, but they might be just what the doctor ordered to help him heal…

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Tour Schedule

January 10th:
Bizwings Blog
Remembrancy
Reading Is My SuperPower
January 11th:
JoJo’s Corner
Mythical Books
Jorie Loves A Story
January 12th:
Christy's Cozy Corners
Hearts & Scribbles
Reviewingbooksplusmore
January 13th:
Wishful Endings
Rockin' Book Reviews
#BRVL Book Review Virginia Lee Blog
By day, Jill Weatherholt works for the City of Charlotte. At night, and on the weekend, she writes contemporary stories about love, faith and forgiveness for Harlequin Love Inspired. 
 
Raised in the suburbs of Washington, D.C., she now resides in Charlotte, North Carolina, but her heart belongs to Virginia. 
 
She holds a degree in Psychology from George Mason University and Paralegal Studies Certification from Duke University. 
 
She shares her life with her real-life hero and number one supporter. Their relationship grew on the golf course, and now they have one in their backyard. 
 
Jill believes in enjoying every moment of this journey because God has everything under control.


Tour Giveaway


One winner will receive a signed print copy of Searching for Home by Jill Weatherholt and a $50 Amazon gift card (US only)

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It's the Grand Finale for CLEAN ROMANCE FOR CHRISTMAS! #CleanRomanceXmas21

It's the Grand Finale for CLEAN ROMANCE FOR CHRISTMAS! #CleanRomanceXmas21


On tour with Prism Book Tours
 
We hope you enjoyed the tour! If you missed any of the stops, you can
see snippets and the link to each full post, as well as the giveaway below . . .
 
December 7th: Launch

December 8th: Nancy Campbell Allen - The Matchmaker's Lonely Heart


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Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
Et voila! A new Victorian series was born, featuring three cousins who live in London and are determined to become modern Women of Independent Means. My books almost always feature a healthy dose of mystery along with the romance, and I believe people who have enjoyed my work in the past will not be disappointed here!
 
 December 9th: Rachael Anderson - Five Kisses


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Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | Book Depository

Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
The dark-haired man pushed away from the bookcase and pointed to the shelf above her head. “I’m guessing you used the stack of bibles as a stool to reach this shelf here.” He patted the place where Frankenstein once stood. “Is there a book I can get for you so you can climb down from your perch? People are beginning to stare, and I doubt the proprietress would appreciate seeing any book, especially a bible, being used as a stool.” 
 
December 10th: Sarah M. Eden - The Merchant and the Rogue


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Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
I set this story, a mystery filled with creepy scenery and disconcerting characters, in the real-life Museum of Natural History in Dublin, Ireland. This museum was opened in 1856 in a stately Dublin building, and very little about it has changed since. It is often described as “a museum of a museum.” Walking through this piece of Dublin history is like stepping back in time. And it is one of the most wonderfully creepy places I have ever had the joy of visiting.
 
December 11th: Arlem Hawks - Georgana's Secret


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Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
She wiped the moisture from her eyes and watched the bright moon above them. He
ignored the moon and the way it tripped across the waves. Tonight he forgot the ocean. He
watched her.
 
His heart pounded between his ribs, and he nearly let it push him forward to kiss that
contented smile. How would it feel to have Georgana Woodall’s soft lips caressing his own? To
be wanted by someone like her would be a wondrous thing.

December 12th: Jess Heileman - The Nabob's Daughter


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Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon

Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
My palms were clammy within my gloves, and I mindlessly rubbed them against my middle. Did I truly have the tenacity to enact such a preposterous scheme? It wasn’t too late to simply comply with Papa’s demands and marry Lord Denhurst’s son. I wavered between two seemingly detestable options. Then an image of India filled my mind’s eye. If I abandoned my plan now, I would likely never see my home again. Once Papa was in England, he would see me married, just as he said he would. That would not do. No, I needed to convince Lord Denhurst to revoke his offer, thus adhering to Papa’s admonition that I would not make him break his word, and to be on my way home before Papa arrived.  

December 13th: Krista Jensen - Miracle Creek Christmas


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Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
Miracle Creek Christmas was originally titled, "Hold on Forever" after the song by Rob Thomas, who I adore. The song so perfectly expresses the way Riley and Mark come to feel about each other--"Lay down all your troubles end to end, they could reach up to the stars. So many roads, you don't know where you've been, but you still know who you are . . . Just fall apart if you need to. I'm here and I won't leave you now. Don't look down. Hold on forever..." Such a great song for these two.  

December 14th: Jen Geigle Johnson - A Christmas Kiss


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Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
Evaline carefully wrapped a black band around her arm. “Remy, could you help me tie it tight enough that it will stay?”
“Certainly, my lady.” Her loyal lady’s maid cinched it and applied a pin at the back for good measure.
“Excellent. Mother deserves longer than the small three hundred and sixty five days of mourning no matter what Father or Aunt say.”
 
December 15th: Josi S. Kilpack - Love and Lavender


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Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
Josi's Top 10 Christmas list, in very particular order:

10. The Christmas Season
9. Singing Christmas songs at church
8. Wrapping presents
7. October 15th, when I buy all the presents online . . .
 
December 16th: Carla Laureano - Discovered by Love series


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Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
Romance novellas are short and sweet, and they focus exclusively on the falling-in-love butterflies between the main couple, without much distraction from outside plot or secondary characters. Setting adds a necessary texture and interest to an otherwise straightforward story, and it can either act as a main feature in the couple’s burgeoning romance or as a source of conflict that threaten their happiness. So with that kind of importance in the story, why not make it a great one? 
 
December 17th: Sarah L. McConkie - Meet Me Under the Kissing Bough


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Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
This book is a retelling of A Christmas Carol. Most of the character's names are some kind of spin-off of the original, or found somewhere in the book. It was fun figuring out a way to make past, present, and future work through letters and not ghosts!
 
December 18th: Carol Ross - His Hometown Yuletide Vow


Follow the Author: Website | Goodreads | Facebook | Twitter | Pinterest | BookBub

Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
“I didn’t even know you were participating in the auction until I saw the program tonight. Before I could find you myself, a friend introduced me to Todd, and Todd asked if I’d be willing to meet you...” Derrick’s mouth pulled up on one side like he was trying not to smile. He was all boyish innocence and every bit as appealing as Anne remembered as he added, “He, uh, he actually asked me if I’d flirt with you a little.”

Anne choked out a surprised laugh. “Thank you for sparing us both that awkwardness.”

Grinning, he assured her, “It wouldn’t be awkward for me.”
 
December 19th: Nichole Van - Brotherhood of the Black Tartan series


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Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
“Dinnae mock a fine kilt, Peter. The kilt swish is no’ tae be underestimated.”
“The kilt swish?” Lady Jane’s tone dripped with scorn.
“It’s a well-known fact that the lasses appreciate watching a man’s passion pleats swish as he walks.”
“Particularly from the backside,” Kieran helpfully clarified.
 
December 20th: Anneka R. Walker - Brides and Brothers


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Snippet from the Excerpt (find the full post here):
 
It didn’t bode well if thoughts of dating again had distracted him to the point of nearly burning down his house. While he loved living in a bachelor pad with his brothers, a guy could only live off frozen food for so many years before he cracked. If getting married could change this, dating might be worth it. With a sigh of disgust, he rinsed the charred hot pad under water. He let it drip dry before he opened the drawer next to the oven and threw it in. 
 
December 21st: Camron Wright - Christmas by Accident


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Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble 

Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
In the story I pay subtle homage to many Christmas classics, perhaps borrowing a line of dialogue from one or including an obscure quotation from another. While some references are obvious, others are subtle. A fun game as you read is to see how many you can find.
 
December 22nd: Julie Wright - A Captain for Caroline Gray


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Find the Book: Goodreads | Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Target 

Snippet from the Guest Post (find the full post here):
 
Women really did cross oceans to finds husbands. They were called the Fishing Fleet women. The Fishing Fleet began at the end of the seventeenth century when the East India Company began shipping women from England to India to marry their officers. The title of “Fishing Fleet women” is used as an insult as it was used to refer to women who had to go out “fishing” for husbands.

Tour Giveaway


One winner will receive a $75 (USD) Amazon E-Gift Card

Open internationally
Ends December 29, 2021


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