Monday, November 24, 2014

Virtual Blurb Blitz & Giveaway for An Amish Christmas Quilt by Charlotte Hubbard, Jennifer Beckstrand and Kelly Long

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Welcome to my stop on the Virtual Blurb Blitz Tour, presented by Goddess Fish Promotions, for An Amish Christmas Quilt by Charlotte Hubbard, Kelly Long and Jennifer Beckstrand.  Please leave a comment or question for the authors to let them know you stopped by.  You can enter their tour wide giveaway, for a $25 Amazon GC, by filling out the Rafflecopter form below.  You can also follow their tour by clicking on the banner above.  The more stops you visit, the better your odds of winning. 

An Amish Christmas Quilt
By Charlotte Hubbard, Kelly Long, Jennifer Beckstrand

Publisher:  Kensington Publishing
Release Date: October 28, 2014
Genre: Amish Holiday Romance/Inspirational Romance
Length; 288 Pages
ISBN:  978-1617735547

eBook Buy Links:  Kindle | Nook | iBooks | Kensington

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About the book:

A Willow Ridge Christmas Pageant by Charlotte Hubbard

Seth Brenneman didn’t expect his holiday would include rescuing pregnant young Mary Kaffman and her two children…or having unexpected feelings for the still-grieving widow. But when they must play the leads in an impromptu live Nativity pageant to help his Amish community, will their roles reveal their hearts—and work a miracle for a lifetime?

A Perfect Amish Christmas by Jennifer Beckstrand

Anna and Felty Helmuth’s grandson, Gideon, plans to spend Christmas on a beach in sunny Mexico. But Anna is quite sure he’d rather be with them, snowshoeing, ice fishing—falling in love. And she knows the perfect girl. Not only is Dottie Schrock an excellent quilter and baker, she’s having a party. There’s just one complication—Gideon is not invited. Dottie has her reasons, but Anna trusts that the spirit of Christmas—and true love-will change her mind, and her future …

A Christmas On Ice Mountain by Kelly Long

Matthew Beider and Laurel Lapp's secret wish to marry is a gift their feuding fathers definitely won't accept. And trying to settle their dats' long-standing quarrel is making their holiday anything but merry. Can rediscovering the joys and friendships of Christmas past finally turn their families' futures bright?


From A Perfect Amish Christmas by Jennifer Beckstrand

Dottie walked down the hallway to the front entryway and stopped in her tracks. Her stomach fell to her toes and shot back up again as if she were riding an unpleasant roller coaster.

Hat in hand, Gid Stutzman leaned against the doorjamb, his brow cocked and his mouth twisted into a wry grin. His loose brown curls fell across his forehead and his dark eyes flashed with a mixture of amusement and annoyance.

He wasn’t supposed to be here. He should have received Ada’s letter a week ago.

Dottie’s stomach did a double back flip and three somersaults. It had been two years since she had seen Gideon Stutzman and he’d definitely grown up. His shoulders and arms had filled out nicely, and that square jaw and tan face made her heart flutter even as her stomach kept bouncing. But his appearance didn’t matter. She’d always think of him as Junior’s annoying teenage cousin who never stopped teasing her and made a point to make a pest of himself.

He’d sure enough received Ada’s letter, because it dangled casually in his fingers like a used tissue. She swallowed hard. Oh, he was annoyed all right. And it was a good guess the letter had something to do with it.

“Dottie Schrock, I would have a word with you about this letter.”

Her stomach stopped its roller coaster ride and lodged in her throat. “I’m wonderful busy right now,” she managed to squeeze out.

He nodded. “Oh, I’m sure you are.” His other brow rose to meet the first one. “Getting ready for the party I’m not invited to.”

AUTHOR Bios and Links:

Jennifer Beckstrand

Jennifer Beckstrand is the bestselling author of The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series and the Forever After in Apple Lake series, set in two Amish communities in beautiful Wisconsin. She has always been drawn to the strong faith and the enduring family ties of the Plain people and loves writing about the antics of Anna and Felty Helmuth, the two scheming Amish grandparents who try to help their grandchildren find suitable mates in Huckleberry Hill. Who would ever suspect two elderly Amish folks of mischief?

Jennifer has a degree in mathematics, which comes in handy when one of her six children needs help with algebra. After twenty-five years of being a chauffeur, cook, maid, and nurse, she embarked on a writing career. Jennifer is a member of Romance Writers of America and is represented by Mary Sue Seymour of The Seymour Agency.

She and her husband have been married for thirty years, and she has four daughters, two sons, and two adorable grandsons, whom she spoils rotten.

You can find out more about Jennifer and her books by going to her website: or visiting her Facebook page: Jennifer Beckstrand Fans.

Twitter: @JenniferBeckst1

Charlotte Hubbard

Many moons ago—like, in 1983 while I was still a school librarian—I sold my first story to True Story magazine. This launched me into writing about seventy of those “true confessions” stories over the years, and I’ve been a slave to my overactive imagination ever since. My stories invariably take on a life of their own, different from the way I’ve proposed them: I love it when unforeseen characters and plot twists come along, because they keep me guessing right along with my readers!

I love touring historic homes, trying new recipes, crocheting, and playing with my border collie Ramona—although it’s humbling, having a dog smarter than I am! I’m an ordained Presbyterian deacon, and I devote a lot of time to singing in my church choir and to practicing/performing with our percussion ensemble. I’m celebrating more than thirty-five years with my husband, who—bless him—has never once suggested I get a real job!

Kelly Long

I grew up around the Old Order Amish Community of Rote, Pennsylvania, deep in the Allegheny Mountains. I have a great respect for the Amish as a people group and I am proud to represent them in my novels.

A huge fan of both holiday romance and inspirational romance, I jumped at the chance to read and review An Amish Christmas Quilt.  I especially looked forward to the chance to re-visit the Willow Ridge community built by Charlotte Hubbard, whose previous books in this series I’ve enjoyed immensely.  I also looked forward to reading the stories by Jennifer Beckstrand and Kelly Long, since I’ve never read anything by them before.  I can easily report that I enjoyed this book so much, that I’ve already read it twice from cover to cover.  I’ll be doing mini-reviews for each story below.

A Willow Ridge Christmas Pageant by Charlotte Hubbard

Taking us back to the Willow Ridge community, Ms. Hubbard introduces us to young widow Mary Kaffman and her two children as they arrive in town.  Nine months pregnant, and actively in labor, Mary and her kids are supposed to be staying with her Aunt Miriam but are lost.  Fortunately they receive help from Seth Brenneman, a friend of their aunt, and one of the local carpenter/woodworkers in town. 

Ms. Hubbard does a wonderful job developing all of the characters in this short story; while fans of her Willow Ridge series have already met Miriam, her husband Ben, and Seth Brenneman, it was nice to meet Mary and her two children, who are really her deceased husband’s children from his first wife.  The attraction and romance between Mary and Seth develops over several months and is sweet and believable.  The focus of the story being on family, love and keeping the birth of Christ as the focus of the holiday season was also well done.  I also enjoyed getting to catch up with some of the remaining residents of Willow Ridge. 

While this is an installment in an established series, this short story can be enjoyed on its own and would be a good introduction to Ms. Hubbard’s style of writing if you have not read her before. 

My Rating:  5 out of 5 Crowns

A Perfect Amish Christmas by Jennifer Beckstrand

A grandmother determined to act as a matchmaker and a Christmas Eve snow storm bring together Dottie Schrock, a young woman determined to give her mother the “perfect” Christmas, and Gideon “Gid” Stutzman, a young man who helps to remind her of the true reason for the holiday season. 

Ms. Beckstrand did a wonderful job introducing her characters and developing their romance within the short story.  I enjoyed Dottie and “Gid’s” lively conversational style and their teasing banter.  I also enjoyed getting to know Gid’s grandparents, Anna and Felty Helmuth, whose conversation is just as lively as their younger counterparts. 

Reminding us that a “perfect” holiday celebration is nice but not the reason for the season, Ms. Beckstrand focused on family, love and the birth of Christ while developing the romance between Dottie and Gid.  Now that I’ve been introduced to Ms. Beckstrand’s The Matchmakers of Huckleberry Hill series through this story, I plan to get the rest of the books and keep an eye out for what she has coming next.  Hopefully we will get to see more of Dottie and Gid in the future. 

My Rating:  5 out of 5 Crowns

A Christmas On Ice Mountain by Kelly Long

A little bit shorter than the other two stories in this holiday anthology, Kelly Long’s A Christmas on Ice Mountain focuses more on forgiveness as a theme.  An Amish take on the Hatfield and McCoy saga, Ms. Beckstrand introduces us to John Beider and Luke Lapp, two young men who are best friends at the start of her story.  Friends who have a falling out over an antique shotgun and have let their anger become a long standing feud. 

When Matthew Beider and Laurel Lapp fall in love they know their fathers will not be happy.  Determined to keep their romance a secret, they find themselves in a compromising position during a winter storm that leads to a “shotgun” style wedding.  Both young and in love, neither Matthew or Laurel had thought about the practical issues of their future – where they would live – which family they would spend the holidays with or if they could even get their parents to forgive each other and become friends.

Showcasing that God can always find a solution to your problems if you let him. Ms. Long draws both fathers together through the love of their children.  While the Amish community in Ms. Long’s story is more secluded than the communities in the other two short stories, and a little more old fashioned and German in nature, I really enjoyed getting to know the characters and look forward to reading more of Ms. Long’s work.

My Rating:  4.5 out of 5 Crowns

*****Overall I really enjoyed this anthology and can’t wait to read more of these author’s individual work. 

Overall Anthology Rating:  5 out of 5 Crowns 

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  1. The book reviews!

  2. Thanks so much for featuring our book on your site today, and for reviewing each of our stories! Above and Beyond, Queen Maria!

  3. These were wonderful reviews. I can hardly wait to read these stories.

    1. Thanks for stopping by today, MomJane!

    2. Thanks, MomJane. They'll definitely get you in the Christmas spirit.

  4. What's not to like? I liked the excerpt and the reviews.

    1. Linda, I'm glad you liked the excerpt! Gid and Dottie become completely annoyed with each other before they decide they might fall in love. :)

  5. We're glad you stopped by and spent some time with us, Linda!

  6. Thanks so much for your very kind reviews, Maria! We really appreciate your hosting us on your site today. I hope you get a chance to get to know Anna and Felty in the other Huckleberry books. They are characters!

  7. I really enjoy reading your review about each story and their characters.

    1. Thanks for spending time with us today! We appreciate it!

    2. I thought the reviews were great too. Thanks for visiting today.

  8. I really enjoyed this review! The books sound wonderful and I can't wait to read tbem.

    1. We hope you'll enjoy them, Judy! Thanks for stopping by today!

    2. Thanks, Judy. It was so much fun to write. We're glad we could share it with our readers for Christmas.

  9. I especially like the connection between these stories with the Amish and the CHRISTMAS holidays. Ronnalord(at)msn(dot)com

    1. Christmas stories, for me, are the most fun to write, as well. Thanks for spending some time with us, Ronna!

    2. I agree with Charlotte. Christmas stories are super fun to write. Probably because I love Christmas.