Wings of the Wind - Out From Egypt Book 3 - Connilyn Cossette

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

My Rating
★★★★★ - You have bewitched me, body and soul. (More Info)

About the Book
Alanah, a Canaanite, is no stranger to fighting and survival. When her family is killed in battle with the Hebrews, she disguises herself and sneaks onto the battlefield to avenge her family. The one thing she never counted on was surviving. 

Tobiah, a Hebrew warrior, is shocked to find an unconscious, wounded woman among the Canaanite casualties. Compelled to bring her to a Hebrew healer back at their camp, he is soon confronted with a truth he can't ignore: the only way to protect this enemy is to marry her.

Unused to being weak and vulnerable, Alanah submits to the marriage--for now. As she comes to know and respect Tobiah and his people, however, she begins to second-guess her plans of escape. But when her past has painfully unanticipated consequences, the tentative peace she's found with Tobiah, the Hebrews, and Yahweh is shaken to the core. Can Alanah's fierce heart and strength withstand the ensuing threats to her life and all she's come to love? (Amazon)

My Thoughts
If you have never had a "Book Hangover" before...You will know what one is after reading Wings of the Wind. The long and short of it is...That feeling like you can't go on with life as it was prior to the book you just finished. You must take days to process. You find it beyond difficult to pick up a new book because you have melted into the fictional world and family of these characters, and you can't leave them behind. I also nearly finished this book in ONE SITTING!!! I don't do that very often. But I literally had to convince myself I needed to sleep last night. (Sleep is overrated right? 😉) And on THAT begins my "official" review:

Connilyn Cossette has a true gift, weaving the history and truth of the Bible with imagination. Enhancing the stories to the point that I feel like I can TASTE the manna, I can SEE the cloud, I can HEAR the shofar blow, and I can FEEL the agony of the Canaanites. A people who have been led to live life a certain way, and they know nothing else.

Allanah and Tobiah have found a place in my heart. A "Culture Clash" of massive proportions and a romance that is so sweet and tender. A Canaanite by birth, will Allanah be able to open her heart to the people who have embraced her as their own? Tobiah is full of compassion and love for his family, but when his path leads him to Allanah, his life ends up going in a direction he didn't expect.

Although Allanah and Tobiah are fictional, there are plenty of REAL people, places, and events in this story. And the truth of God's love, forgiveness, salvation, is very real. There are many challenging issues that come up, but you know what? They really happened, and are still happening today. We can not just brush these uncomfortable things under the rug. I commend Connilyn for bringing these issues to light in a heart wrenching yet very real way.

From beginning to end, Wings of the Wind had me utterly captivated. It is a rare thing for me to read a book this fast. And if it wasn't for sleep and feeding my family, I would have completed this in one sitting. Now I can't wait to go back and read the first two books in the series. I think it is safe to say that all of Connilyn's books, both past and future, will make it to my reading list. Brava Connilyn! I am officially hooked!

I received a complimentary copy of Wings of the Wind from Bethany House Publishers. I was not required to write a positive review. All opinions expressed are mine alone.

About the Author
Connilyn CossetteWhen she is not homeschooling her two sweet kids (with a full pot of coffee in at hand), Connilyn Cossette is scribbling notes on spare paper, mumbling about her imaginary friends, and reading obscure, out-of-print history books. There is nothing she likes better than digging into the rich ancient world of the Bible and uncovering buried gems of grace that point toward Jesus. Although a Pacific Northwest native, she now lives near Dallas, Texas.  

Also by Connilyn...
I have not read these ones yet, but you can be sure any and all of Connilyn's past and future books will be on my TBR! Click on the covers to learn more!


Many thanks to Canva for providing an AMAZING program for me to design all these beautiful graphics. Book covers, publisher/tour logos, and author pictures not owned by me. All other graphics created by Bookworm Mama with public domain photos on Canva. (Book descriptions taken from author webpage, Amazon, or Goodreads.)

Top Ten Tuesday - Most Anticipated Reads Releasing July - December 2017

Monday, May 29, 2017

Hosted by The Broke and the Bookish, this week's topic has me SLIGHTLY stressing out. Because there are SO many good books releasing this year! When am I possibly going to find the time to read them all? There are probably also loads that I am unaware of at the moment. Are any of these on your list to read already? If not, did you add any of these?

In no particular order...I just wrote down the first 10 that popped into my head. (It is inevitable that I forgot someone...please know it wasn't intentional.)

Out of the Ordinary
by Jen Turano

When shipping magnate Harrison Sinclair's mother catches Gertrude Cadwalader, paid companion to the light-fingered Mrs. Davenport, returning a pilfered item, she comes to the wrong conclusion. However, Harrison is eager to mend fences once he realizes the error. After a real thief starts preying on society, can Gertrude and Harrison catch the culprit?

Releases November 2017

An Inconvenient Beauty
by Kristi Ann Hunter

The Duke of Riverton has chosen his future wife with the same logic he uses to make every decision. However, his perfect bride eludes his suit, while the beautiful Isabella Berkeley seems to be everywhere. When the time comes, will Griffith and Isabella be able to set aside their pride and initial notions to embrace their very own happily-ever-after?

Releases September 2017

Charming the Troublemaker
by Pepper Basham

Releases October 2017

The House on Foster Hill
by Jaime Jo Wright

Kaine Prescott is no stranger to death. When her husband died two years ago, her pleas for further investigation into his suspicious death fell on deaf ears. In desperate need of a fresh start, Kaine purchases an old house sight unseen in her grandfather's Wisconsin hometown. But one look at the eerie, abandoned house immediately leaves her questioning her rash decision. And when the house's dark history comes back with a vengeance, Kaine is forced to face the terrifying realization she has nowhere left to hide. 
A century earlier, the house on Foster Hill holds nothing but painful memories for Ivy Thorpe. When an unidentified woman is found dead on the property, Ivy is compelled to discover her identity. Ivy's search leads her into dangerous waters and, even as she works together with a man from her past, can she unravel the mystery before any other lives--
including her own--are lost?

Releases December 2017

Lady Jayne Disappears
by Joanna Davidson Politano

A young woman the world has written off is secretly the most popular writer of Victorian England . . . but will her own story end as tragically as the heroine in her famous novels?

Releases October 2017

A Name Unknown
by Roseanna M. White

Rosemary Gresham has no family beyond the band of former urchins that helped her survive as a girl in the mean streets of London. Grown now, they concentrate on stealing high-value items and have learned how to blend into upper-class society. But when Rosemary must determine whether a certain wealthy gentleman is loyal to Britain or to Germany, she is in for the challenge of a lifetime. How does one steal a family's history, their very name?

Peter Holstein, given his family's German blood, writes his popular series of adventure novels under a pen name. With European politics boiling and his own neighbors suspicious of him, Peter debates whether it might be best to change his name for good. When Rosemary shows up at his door pretending to be a historian and offering to help him trace his family history, his question might be answered. 

But as the two work together and Rosemary sees his gracious reaction to his neighbors' scornful attacks, she wonders if her assignment is going down the wrong path. Is it too late to help him prove that he's more than his name?

Releases July 2017

by Sara Ella

Eliyana Ember doesn’t believe in true love. Not anymore. After all she’s been through between capturing the Void and saving the Second Reflection, El only trusts what’s right in front of her. The tangible. The real. Not some unexplained Kiss of Infinity she once shared with the ghost of a boy she’s trying to forget. She has more important things to worry about—like becoming queen of the Second Reflection, a role she is so not prepared to fill.

But why does she feel like something—or someone—Is missing?

When the Callings, those powerful magical gifts, become threatened, Eliyana discovers her connection with Ky Rhyen may have something to do with it. El needs answers before the Callings disappear altogether. Can she find a way to sever her tie with Ky without killing him, and keep herself from truly falling for him in the process?

Releases July 2017

Death at Thorburn Hall
Julianna Deering

Drew Farthering finds a new mystery on his hands when he arrives at Thorburn Hall in Scotland for the 1935 British Open. His host, Lord Rainsby, asks Drew to investigate a suspected embezzler--then dies in a suspicious accident the next day. However, the house is full of guests with potential motives. Can Drew discover the killer among them?

Releases November 2017

Too Far Down
by Mary Connealy

Cowboys, Action, Humor, and History Collide in Connealy's Latest

When an explosion kills men and damages the CR Mining Company, the Bodens realize their troubles are not behind them as they thought. Shadowy forces are still working against them. 
Cole Boden finds himself caught between missing his time back East and all that New Mexico offers. Sure he fights with his siblings now and then, but he does care for them. He enjoys running the mine and, when he's honest, he admits that Melanie Blake captures his interest in a way no other woman ever has. 
Melanie has been a friend to the Bodens forever. A cowgirl who is more comfortable with horses and lassoes than people, she never expected to find herself falling for someone. Particularly for refined Cole Boden, a Harvard graduate who may not stay long at the ranch. She's determined, however, to help the Bodens finally put an end to the danger that's threatened all of them. But will putting herself in harm's way be more dangerous than anyone expected?

Releases October 2017

Chasing Secrets
by Lynette Eason

When a photo leads investigators in Ireland to open a cold case, bodyguard Haley Callaghan and her client are now in the cross-hairs as they race to find what links the past to their future.

Releases August 2017

Author Interview & GIVEAWAY - Teresa Tysinger

About the Book

Artist Livy Johnson needs a fresh start. That's what a broken heart and forgotten dreams can do to a person. On little more than a whim, she reclaims her grandmother’s old home in quaint Laurel Cove, North Carolina and vows to restore its original charm. When she literally collides with childhood friend, Jack Bowdon, Livy wonders if she’s back for an entirely different reason. 

Jack can’t believe his childhood crush is back. As the owner of Bowdon's Supplies, and once again the town's most eligible bachelor, he offers to help Livy with repairs. Together they embark on the project—and an undeniable whirlwind romance.

But it’s not all smooth sailing. Can they survive the destructive pain of their pasts to discover God’s grace waiting to renovate their hearts?

About the Author

Teresa Tysinger is a wife and mother transplanted from North Carolina to North Texas. When not working as the Director of Communications for a large downtown church, she writes charming southern romances inspired by grace. A member of American Christian Fiction Writers, Religious Communicators’ Council, and the Association for Women in Communications, Teresa has spent over a decade committed to telling stories of faith through written word. She also offers graphic design and marketing services to other authors through her freelance business, Good Day Publishing. She loves coffee, caramel, and stories with happy endings.

Welcome to Bookworm Mama Teresa! I am so giddy to have you here today visiting with me! 

Where did your love of books/storytelling/reading/writing/etc. come from?

Teresa: I don’t remember a time when I wasn’t in love with books. Stories gave me a way into worlds I’d otherwise never see, people I’d never otherwise meet. It was exhilarating and adventurous for an otherwise pretty quiet kid. Writing came a little later as a teenager, writing poems to express myself and short stories for school. But I continued to devour any book I could get my hands on. That turned into earning two degrees in English/Writing. Now, I have a career in communications and a budding author life, too!

Rachel: The bookish soul is strong with this one folks!

What literary character is most like you? Why?

Teresa: Oh, this is a hard one. I’m horrible at self-identifying. Maybe Elizabeth Bennet from Pride and Prejudice because I am independent, loyal to friends and family, and sometimes speak before I think. Yet at the end of the day, I am a romantic through and through. I guess there’s a reason it is my favorite book and she’s my favorite character. We relate to one another.

Rachel: I love this description. Elizabeth is one of my forever favorites that is for sure!

How did you become involved with the subject or theme of your book?

Teresa: The inspiration for Someplace Familiar is two-fold and both related to setting. The book is set in Laurel Cove, a fictional small town tucked into the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina. I fell in love with the area when I attended college just north of Asheville, NC and often visited my best friend’s family who lived a few towns over in Burnsville, NC. Burnsville is the inspiration for Laurel Cove—with its quaint town square, stately inn, Americana charm, slow pace, and family values. I couldn’t wait to introduce readers to such a welcoming, lovely place. 

The second influence is my great-grandmother’s house. Growing up as children, my sister and I would visit often and play in her magical garden of colorful flowers, fragrant fruit trees, nooks and crannies for hiding, tree swing. It was a place I felt comfort, safety, and most importantly love. The small house inspired the cottage readers will find in the book. Our heroine, Livy Johnson, discovers her grandmother’s home is once again for sale but has fallen to ruin. In need of a new start, she buys it and vows to restore its original charm. The descriptions of the cottage in the book mirror many of my memories of my own grandmother’s home. 

Rachel: That is BEAUTIFUL! I want to visit Asheville so bad (Biltmore, Pepper Basham, etc.) Such a wonderful setting. Childhood memories like that are treasure.

Who are some of your favorite authors that you feel were influential in your work? What impact have they had on your writing?

Teresa: Because of some parallels in our stories, I have really been influenced by Pepper Basham. Her stories are set in the Blue Ridge Mountains, as well. Specifically, her contemporary books, namely A Twist of Faith, have been great examples for me of how to effectively write the unique character of the region.

Lisa Wingate has also been a big influence for me as a writer. Because I very much enjoy reading books rich in setting and place, Lisa’s books set in the Carolinas really capture my attention with a vividness that enlivens every sense. Without a doubt, this has inspired my own writing, hopefully also rich with descriptions that readers can really see and feel.

Rachel: I LOVE PEPPER!!! *ahem* I mean...Yes, Pepper's books are incredible. She has the ability to completely immerse you into whatever setting you are reading about. I confess, I have not read any of Lisa's books....yet.

What secret talents do you have?
Teresa: No super hero powers here! But I am a pretty good home chef and enjoy playing around in the kitchen, trying new recipes all the time. Cooking also relaxes me, so it’s a win-win. It is also an activity that my daughter and I enjoy doing together, and as she gets older I savor (pun intended) any moments we get together.

Rachel: Oh this is great! Cooking is a super power all its own! I enjoy cooking...when I don't have a million other things on my mind lol. My kiddos enjoy helping in the kitchen too. Good food, good friends, good times! 

What 5 books have had a significant impact on your life?

Teresa: Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery) – For being the first character I believed to be my friend; showed me the power of well-developed characters.

Bridge to Terabithia (Karen Paterson) – For being the first book that made me cry as a child; showed me the emotional power books could have. 

Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen) – For pulling me so completely into a character’s world that I could not escape and left me a different person after the last page; one I keep going back to over and over again. 

Their Eyes Were Watching God (Zora Neale Hurston) – For opening my eyes to a reality I’d never otherwise know, proving the responsibility authors have to tell the truths they’ve experienced. 

Love Does (Bob Goff) – For really altering my outlook on how I live out my faith every day by loving others in both tiny and huge ways.

Rachel: THIS!!! All of this! Can I just hug you right now???

Do you have any unusual writing habits?

Teresa: Not really. Most unusual to some might be that I don’t have a habit. Ha! Because I work full-time and am on parent duty alone in the evenings (my husband works most nights/weekends), my writing happens in little snippets of time whenever I can manage it. On lunch hours, late-nights once my kiddo is in bed, the occasional 8-hour marathon at the coffee shop when my husband is home, etc. I’d love to have a set schedule that I could rely on week in and week out, but that’s just not my reality right now. Oh, and I also must have both coffee and water nearby when I write.

Rachel: Hahaha! Just means you are unique right? COFFEE!!!!! Coffee is life!

What writing advice do you have for pre-published authors?

Teresa: Don’t rush the process. A good book, like a good wine, takes time to mature and become what it’s meant to be. (How’s that for a cheesy analogy?) If you rush it, not only might the quality of the book suffer, but you’ll likely miss treasures along the way: making new author friends, connecting with readers, learning through research, miss the full potential of the story’s message, etc.

Rachel: Haha I think you are right on though! Take time to smell the roses right? 

What is up next for you?

Teresa: I’ll be working on the second Laurel Cove book. Someplace Familiar is the first of three books set in Laurel Cove, NC. Each will be stand-alone, but will share the same setting and a few familiar characters here and there. I will also continue working with authors on marketing consultation and graphic design needs through my small business, Good Day Publishing Services.

Rachel: Yay! I am so excited to read Someplace Familiar! It was GREAT chatting with you and getting to know you a little better! Thank you for joining us today!

Chat with us! What books have made a significant impact on your life?

Teresa has graciously provided an eBook of Someplace Familiar for a giveaway! Please enter via the Rafflecopter form below. Giveaway ends 6/4/17 at 11:59pm PDT. One winner will be chosen at random by Rafflecopter. Open internationally. Void where prohibited. Please see my policies and disclosures for more information.
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