Sunday, December 20, 2020

~ MMGM THE STORY OF HOLLY AND IVY ~

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~ MARVELOUS MIDDLE-GRADE
MONDAY HISTORICAL
CHRISTMAS FICTION ~
--  'THE STORY OF HOLLY & IVY'  --
AUTHOR RUMER GODDEN
PICTURES BY BARBARA COONEY
~Post Includes:  Book Spotlight, Author
Bio, Link Pack to Activities,
and My Thoughts~


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ABOUT THE BOOK (FROM GOODREADS):

Ivy, Holly, and Mr. and Mrs. Jones all have one Christmas wish.

Ivy, an orphan, wishes for a real home and sets out in search of the grandmother she's sure she can find. Holly, a doll, wishes for a child to bring her to life. And the Joneses wish more than anything for a son or daughter to share their holiday. Can all three wishes come true? This festive tale is perfectly complemented by beloved Barbara Cooney's luminous illustrations, filled with the warm glow of the Christmas spirit.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR (FROM GOODREADS):
Margaret Rumer Godden was born in Sussex, but grew up in India, in Narayanganj. Many of her 60 books are set in India. Black Narcissus was made into a famous movie with Deborah Kerr in 1947.

Godden wrote novels, poetry, plays, biographies, and books for children.

For more information, see the official website: Rumer Godden

ABOUT THE ILLUSTRATOR:
Barbara Cooney was a Caldecott Award winner. I found a detailed, insightful biography of her here:  
 
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RESOURCES:
 
--  Waldorf Preschool Newsletter which focuses on ideas for family activities relating to this book:  Ideas for Families 
 
--  Find activities for this story under Day 13 on this 'Literature-Based Homeschool' Blog:  Language-Arts, Social Studies & Art Ideas   
 
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MY THOUGHTS:
I used to read this book to my first grade students each December before we went on winter break. I think I'm giving this story the highest compliment possible by saying that after the holidays, the girls and the boys begged, and I do mean begged, me to reread this touching story to them again. Most years we read the story at least three times!

It's an awesome story with delightful illustrations. The text of the story originally appeared in the Ladies Home Journal Magazine in 1957. It was originally published by Viking Penguin Inc. in 1958. I have owned a copy of this book for thirty-three years, and I still read it every holiday season for my own pleasure. Each time I read this magical story I find new things to appreciate and admire about it.

The first line of the book is:  "This is a story about wishing."

Who knows more about wishing than children? That's how the magic of this story begins. And there is an element of fantasy in this story that children of all ages will enjoy.

The main characters of the story are an orphan girl, Ivy, and a beautiful Christmas doll in a toy shop window, Holly. Through a chain of unfortunate events and through her own iron will, Ivy disobeys the instructions of Miss Shepherd, the woman who runs the orphanage. Instead of going to the infants home in the country, Ivy tells everyone at the train station and on the train that she is getting off at Appleton to spend Christmas with her grandmother.

There is no grandmother, but there is an Appleton. When Ivy awakes from a nap, she jumps out of the train at a station where the sign reads "A. p. . t.n.". Ivy is not a good reader {many of my students could relate to this at this point in the school year}, but she knows "A" stands for Appleton. She forgets about her suitcase and pencil box and begins to explore the quaint town.

Ivy enjoys the Christmas market and wanders around until darkness falls. Then she begins walking up and down the streets of the neighborhood looking into houses and seeing happy families, lovely Christmas trees, and other decorations. Ivy is even more determined to find her 'grandmother'. 

Eventually she finds the toy shop and discovers Holly the Christmas doll on the shelf in the front window. Ivy is mesmerized by the doll -- her Christmas doll

I won't go any further with the plot because I do not want to spoil the beauty and magic of this story for any of you who may read it for yourself or read it to your children and grandchildren. Suffice to say, this is my all-time favorite piece of Christmas-themed children's literature!

***Highly-recommended to readers of all ages! This story will open up valuable discussions about being without a family, wishing, and adoption.

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Find the links to read more great Marvelous Middle-Grade Monday posts from middle-grade authors and bloggers at Greg Pattridge's 'Always in the Middle' Blog.


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Thursday, December 17, 2020

~ FRIDAY FICTION FEATURE HER AMISH WEDDING QUILT ~

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~ FRIDAY FICTION FEATURE ~
--  'HER AMISH WEDDING QUILT'  --
AUTHOR WINNIE GRIGGS
~Post Includes:  Book Spotlight, Excerpt,
Author Bio & Giveaway~
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Her Amish Wedding Quilt Blog Tour 

 

Welcome to the Blog Tour & Giveaway for Her Amish Wedding Quilt by Winnie Griggs, hosted by JustRead Publicity Tours!

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ABOUT THE BOOK

 

Her Amish Wedding Quilt
TitleHer Amish Wedding Quilt 
Series: Hope's Haven #1 
Author: Winnie Griggs 
Publisher: Forever 
Release Date: December 15, 2020 
Genre: Amish Romance 

An Amish seamstress and a single father have a chance to make a fresh start in this heartwarming novel about finding love when you need it the most. 

Spirited, forthright, impulsive -- everyone told Greta Eicher she'd have to change her ways if she ever hoped to marry. Then her best friend Calvin, the man she thought she would wed, chooses another woman. Now Greta's wondering if the others were right all along. Her dreams dashed, she pours her energy into crafting beautiful quilts at her shop and helping widower Noah Stoll care for his adorable young children. 

Noah knows it's time to think about finding a wife. When Greta offers to play matchmaker on his behalf, Noah eagerly accepts. After all, no one knows his children better. But none of the women she suggests seems quite right, because, unexpectedly, his feelings of respect and friendship for Greta have grown into something even deeper and richer. But will he have enough faith to overcome the pain of his past and give love another chance?
 
EXCERPT:

Greta Eicher hopped out of bed and went to her window. She enjoyed watching the sun come up and she couldn’t think of any better way to start off this New Year’s Day.

Kneeling, she rested her forearms on the windowsill as she admired the view. It was beautiful, breathtaking. Those shifting shades of gold, orange and purple were a wonderful testament to Gotte’s creation, and the patterns they created on the snow this morning were particularly lovely. If only she could capture such beauty in her own quilt designs.

The morning light bathed the milking barn where the inside lighting proclaimed that Daed and Amos were already at work. Skip, their dog, raced out of the barn then back in, obviously full of energy. The fields beyond, blanketed with four or so inches of snow, looked pristine, as if providing a clean slate for the new day.

With a happy sigh, she thought again about what a wonderful gut year this would be. She’d waited long enough for Calvin Stoll to figure things out on his own, to see past their friendship to what was so obvious to her, that she and he would be gut together. This was the year it would happen, she could feel it.

Even if it meant she had to prod him a bit to help him see it.


 
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Winnie Griggs

Winnie Griggs is the multi-published, award-winning author of romances that focus on small towns, big hearts, and amazing grace. Her work has won a number of regional and national awards, including the Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice Award. Winnie grew up in southeast Louisiana in an undeveloped area her friends thought of as the back of beyond. Eventually, she found her own Prince Charming, and together they built a storybook happily-ever-after, one that includes four now-grown children who are all happily pursuing adventures of their own. When not busy writing, she enjoys cooking, browsing estate sales, and solving puzzles. She is also a list maker, a lover of exotic teas, and holds an advanced degree in the art of procrastination.

CONNECT WITH WINNIE: Website | Facebook 
 
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TOUR GIVEAWAY

(1) winner will receive a book lover's prize package!

Her Amish Wedding Quilt

Be sure to check out each stop on the tour for more chances to win. Full tour schedule linked below. Giveaway will begin at midnight December 15, 2020 and last through 11:59 PM EST on December 22, 2020. Winner will be notified within 2 weeks of close of the giveaway and given 48 hours to respond or risk forfeiture of prize. US only. Void where prohibited by law or logistics.

Giveaway is subject to the policies found here.

ENTER GIVEAWAY HERE

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Follow along at JustRead Tours for a full list of stops!
JustRead Publicity Tours 

*NOTE: This post contains affiliate links.

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Wednesday, December 16, 2020

~ BOOK BLAST WNL TOURS BLAST FROM THE PAST ~

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 ~ WNL BOOK TOURS
BOOK BLAST ~
--  'BLAST FROM THE PAST'  --
AUTHOR M.E.MARSHALL
~Post Includes:  Author Bio, Book 
Spotlight & Book Trailer~  

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Write Now Literary is pleased to be organizing a book blast for Blast From The Past by M. E. Marshall. The book blast tour will run on December 17. 

            

Genre: Fiction/Christian Suspense

 

ISBN-10 : 0997257628

ISBN-13 : 978-0997257625

 

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MEET MADLYN:

 


Madlyn Marshall is the Founder of G.R.A.C.E. Ministry and G.R.A.C.E. Publishing, Inc., who aspires to empower the Christian community with the gems of knowledge of biblical principles relating to money management. A dedicated humanitarian and evangelist, she devotes her time to helping others eradicate the complexities from the process of financial management, budgeting, and consumer credit. Madlyn holds 40+ years of experience serving Corporate America in the field of Credit & Collection and served as the Chief Financial Officer at the local church for over 13 years. She strives to channel all the knowledge & experiences to help others learn the art of managing finances and get one step closer to achieving financial freedom.

 

Madlyn Marshall is also a zealous author who aims to inspire a change with her words of wisdom, faith, and encouragement. She writes journals, short stories, poems, and books to empower the community and help people accomplish their financial goals & achieve prosperity. A survivor of physical & emotional abuse and a young witness to spousal abuse, Madlyn has risen above the worst of times with the power of faith. She serves as a beacon of hope for young women who are lost in the abyss of hopelessness and yearning to find a way out of the misery & desolation. Madlyn is laying the foundation for G.R.A.C.E House, that she hopes will begin to break the cycle of misery and help women heal emotionally and physically from the scars of abuse.


Driven by the desire to build a happier world for the generations of today & tomorrow, Madlyn Marshall aspires to inspire a change through education, encouragement, and restoration. She writes with the sole purpose to empower others and help them strengthen the walls of faith and turn to God as the only eternal source of strength & provision. Through her publishing company, Madlyn also provides a platform for aspiring authors to catapult their writing career and play an integral role in empowering the community.

 

Over the years, Madlyn Marshall has received numerous accolades for her contributions to the community and was the recipient of the National Coalition of Women Ministry Esther Award 2013. She holds the Competent Communicator and Competent Leadership Certifications from Toastmasters International and is an active member of the Georgia Christian Business Network. Madlyn also sits on the board of directors of the Words of Comfort Ministries, Inc. 

 

Besides this, Madlyn Marshall cherishes spending time in the company of her friends & families and actively participates in self-development activities. She has served as the Chief Financial Officer for multiple non-profit organizations and believes in the notion of empowering the people as they are the roots of a strong & healthy community. 

 

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ABOUT THE BOOK:

 

The small town of Summersville has a big problem. They must come up with two million dollars in a very short period. In a surprising twist, that exact amount is dropped off at the door of the courthouse. Who left it and why; who is the mysterious man in town and why is he asking questions about the gold old Herman Jones was supposedly found and buried? Why does this stranger seem so familiar?

 

Was there really gold in the surrounding mountains? Found out how the townspeople cope with the sudden wealth and the news of the return of Melanie Jones’ high school sweetheart. Melanie Jones’ ancestors founded the little town, what secrets is she hiding?

 

This is a story of Cagney and Lacey meets Thelma and Louise. Follow Jamie and Melanie as they investigate the town’s new wealth, and the mysterious stranger.

 

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Madlyn's Social Links

 

Website  Twitter  Facebook Amazon

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Tour organized by WNLBookTours




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Tuesday, December 15, 2020

~ GREAT ESCAPES GROUNDS FOR MURDER ~

 ☕☕☕☕☕☕☕☕
~  GREAT ESCAPES BLOG TOUR STOP ~
--  'GROUNDS FOR MURDER'  --
AUTHOR TARA LUSH
~Post Includes:  Book Spotlight,
Author Bio & Giveaway~

 

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 Grounds for Murder (A Coffee Lover's Mystery)  
by Tara Lush

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About Grounds for Murder

                                     
Cozy Mystery 1st in Series  
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books (December 8, 2020)  
Hardcover: 320 pages ISBN-10: 1643856189 ISBN-13: 978-1643856186  
Digital ASIN: B0871KTTMC
 

When Lana Lewis' best -- and most difficult -- employee abruptly quits and goes to work for the competition just days before the Sunshine State Barista Championship, her cafΓ©'s chances of winning the contest are creamed. In front of a gossipy crowd in the small Florida town of Devil's Beach, Lana's normally calm demeanor heats to a boil when she runs into the arrogant java slinger. Of course, Fabrizio "Fab" Bellucci has a slick explanation for jumping ship. But when he's found dead the next morning under a palm tree in the alley behind Lana's cafΓ©, she becomes the prime suspect.

Even the island's handsome police chief isn't quite certain of her innocence. But Lana isn't the only one in town who was angry with Fabrizio. Jilted lovers, a shrimp boat captain, and a surfer with ties to the mob are all suspects as trouble brews on the beach.

With her stoned, hippie dad, a Shih Tzu named Stanley, and a new, curious barista sporting a punk rock aesthetic at her side, Lana's prepared to turn up the heat to catch the real killer.

After all, she is a former award-winning reporter. As scandal hangs over her beachside cafΓ©, can Lana clear her name and win the championship -- or will she come to a bitter end?

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About Tara Lush

                                                        
 
Tara Lush is a Rita Award finalist, an Amtrak writing fellow, and a George C. Polk Award-winning journalist. For the past decade, she's been a reporter with the Associated Press, covering crime, alligators, natural disasters, and politics. She also writes contemporary romance set in tropical locations. A fan of vintage pulp-fiction book covers, Sinatra-era jazz, and 1980s fashion, she lives with her husband and two dogs on the Gulf coast.

Author Links
  

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Purchase Links AMAZON - KOBO - BARNES AND NOBLE - ITUNES - INDIEBOUND  

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a Rafflecopter giveaway  

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TOUR PARTICIPANTS:
December 8 – I'm Into Books – SPOTLIGHT  
December 8 – Maureen's Musings – RECIPE POST
December 9 – The Avid Reader – REVIEW  
December 9 – Escape With Dollycas Into A Good Book – REVIEW December 10 – Ruff Drafts – GUEST POST December 10 – Mysteries with Character – REVIEW December 10 – Socrates Book Reviews – SPOTLIGHT December 11 – Elizabeth McKenna - Author Blog – SPOTLIGHT  
December 11 – My Reading Journeys – REVIEW  
December 12 – Diane Reviews Books – REVIEW  
December 12 – FUONLYKNEW – SPOTLIGHT  
December 12 – MJB Reviewers – SPOTLIGHT  
December 13 – Cozy Up With Kathy – AUTHOR INTERVIEW December 13 – Christy's Cozy Corners – GUEST POST  
December 14 – Author Elena Taylor's Blog – AUTHOR INTERVIEW
December 14 – Sapphyria's Book Reviews – REVIEW
December 14 – Mystery Thrillers and Romantic Suspense Reviews – SPOTLIGHT  
December 15 – Cinnamon, Sugar, and a Little Bit of Murder – REVIEW, RECIPE POST  
December 15 – Literary Gold – SPOTLIGHT  
December 16 – Reading, Writing & Stitch-Metic – SPOTLIGHT  
December 16 – eBook Addicts – RECIPE POST  
December 16 – Books a Plenty Book Reviews – REVIEW
December 17 – Melina's Book Blog – REVIEW  
December 17 – Celticlady's Reviews – SPOTLIGHT 
    
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~ NEW SEWING PATTERN FABRIC FLOWER TOWELS ~

~ NEW SEWING PATTERN FABRIC FLOWER TOWELS ~