Multiple award-winning author Laurie Winter recently stopped by my blog to share some about her writing life.
When do you find time to write? I carve out time for writing every day, either before or after my day job. Sometimes I’ll write in the morning and evening if I’m on a tight deadline. I find having a daily word count goal helpful in keeping me on track.
What did you want to be as a child, and did that dream come true? I wanted to be an Egyptologist when I was young. I loved all things ancient Egypt and dreamed of discovering a tomb with a mummy. Unfortunately, I never pursued it as a career but I still love history, especially about Egypt.
How do you research ways to kill someone for your books? I Google some very strange things for my writing, including methods of killing or incapacitating someone (strictly for my books, of course). I also watch a lot of true crime shows and listen to true crime podcasts.
Multiple award-winning author Laurie Winter is a true warrior of the heart. Inspired by her dreams, she creates authentic characters who overcome the odds and find true love.
Kayla Swartz’s return to Snowberry, Montana, has been a living nightmare. She found her estranged father murdered, and unless she retrieves some missing jewels, Kayla and her three-year-old sister could be next. With nowhere else to turn, Kayla entrusts their lives to bodyguard Nicholas Galanis. But is hiding at a remote cabin in the mountains their best chance to survive…or the perfect opportunity for an ambush?
Super Doople by K.A. Cummins — You’ve heard the legend of Humpty Dumpty, but do you know the legend of Super Doople? He’s faster than a chicken. He flies higher than an ostrich. No fall can break his shell! And he was once Little Doople, a small and fragile egg like all the other dooples, until his bad habit of not listening caught up to him. Engaging text with expressive illustrations, Super Doople is a lighthearted tale about resilience and learning to listen. This funny picture book for ages 3-8 is perfect for reading aloud in the classroom or at home. (Children’s/Picture Books from Eleonora Press)
Always by my Side by Iola Goulton — A hardworking introvert meets a handsome adventurer longing to settle down. Tabitha Thomas longs to leave Trinity Lakes and travel the world in honor of the beloved grandmother who raised her and her siblings. But she’s needed at home—she’s the responsible triplet, the one who stayed home to run the family inn while her brother and sister left to live their dreams. Kiwi Logan Wylde doesn’t call any place home. When an injury frustrates his travel plans, he accepts an invitation to return to Trinity Lakes and recuperate at the Lakeview Inn, where he hopes to rediscover his purpose in life. When Tabby and Logan find a property deed while cleaning out Gran’s rooms, Tabby embraces a new challenge—to solve the mystery of the floodplain and renovate the old boatshed. Working with Logan reignites long-suppressed feelings, but will their differences drive them apart? (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)
Love in the Headlines by Penny Zeller — Can paper and paw prints draw these two nemeses together? All Carleigh Adams wants is a relaxing evening. But Sullivan Theodore IV, her wayward Shih Tzu, has other plans. After escaping from home, Sullivan Theodore unlawfully enters what Carleigh assumes is a stranger’s house via a doggy door.
Trey Montgomery has had to work with “Quirky Carleigh,” his top competitor for the best articles at The Oakville Daily, for the past two years. It’s safe to say that she and her criminally-minded pet are his adversaries. Trey’s attempts to keep his distance from her are demolished when their boss thrusts them together as The Oakville Daily Duo, forcing them to work as a team on every. Single. Article. Petty crimes and crazy shenanigans in Oakville soon draw Carleigh and Trey into doubling as detectives. As they work to report the daily news and solve the crimes in Oakville, can these two stubborn reporters find love in the headlines? (Contemporary Romance, from Maplebrook Publishing)
Loving the Rancher’s Children by Mindy Obenhaus — When Alli Krenek returns to her hometown, she’s surprised to find herself agreeing to become a nanny to Jake Walker’s children. Seventeen years ago, Jake betrayed Alli’s trust, and she’s avoided him ever since. But the more time she spends with Jake, the more his two little ones melt her heart and Alli begins to see the man Jake has become. Is this their chance to finally heal old wounds? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired/Harlequin)
A Vanishing Act by Edwina Kiernan — Hollywood legend Kent Selwood isn’t happy sharing the limelight with rising star Stella Sanders. Tired of her diva drama, Kent makes it clear—he wants Stella gone. Seamstress Bonnie Roseland is practically invisible to everyone at the studio, except for slick actor, Jerry Jackson — the one man she wishes would leave her alone. Her deep-rooted faith helps her see beyond the glitz and glamor to the broken realities and dysfunctional atmosphere at the studio. She sometimes wonders if God has a purpose for her there or if she should just move on. When the studio receives blackmail letters, Kent’s attitude makes him the prime suspect, and he’s swiftly banished from the lot, despite insisting that he’s been framed. Only Bonnie believes him — and she’s confident she knows who the real culprit is. But when a ransom note arrives after Stella goes missing and evidence is discovered that clearly implicates Kent, will Bonnie help him uncover the truth in time to save his career… and Stella’s life? (Historical Mystery from Celebrate Lit Publishing)
A Season at the Grand by Sherri Wilson Johnson — Can the perfect picture reveal the truth before it’s too late? Photographer Amelia Harris has had enough of her aunts’ meddling matchmaking. So when The Photographic Times commissions her to spend the summer on Mobile Bay taking portraits of the elite and capturing nature for penny postcards, Amelia happily accepts. But this job is not as simple as it appears, and Amelia must defend against naysayers if she’s to ever gain respect in a man’s world. And that doesn’t leave any room for romance. Point Clear Resort General Manager Titus Overton never wanted the position he inherited when his cousin passed away. When threats arise against Amelia and the other resort guests, Titus knows he must step in to help. But she insists they trust God for deliverance. How can he turn to a God who took away his first beloved? As the danger closes in, he must find the courage to overcome his past before someone gets hurt-especially the woman he’s come to love. (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)
Counterfeit Faith by Crystal Caudill — As matron of Final Chance House of Refuge, Gwendolyn Ellison has dedicated her life to serving the children deemed delinquents by society. She’ll protect them with everything she has. So when she suspects someone is using Final Chance for criminal deeds, she’s determined to investigate and put a stop to it. But villains don’t like to be crossed–and they’re willing to kill to get their way. Gwendolyn knows she can’t quit fighting. More than her own life is on the line if counterfeiters go free. She must find someone she can trust to help her expose the criminals and protect the children under her care. Charming and chivalrous Secret Service operative Josiah Isaacs has never been able to turn his back on a woman in trouble–and capturing counterfeiters is his job, after all. As both peril and interest grow, he begins to consider whether a second love may be possible–if they can live through this case. At the same time, he’s put off by her faith in a God he no longer trusts. How can a future together even be possible when their beliefs are at odds? (Historical Romance from Kregel Publications)
Frontiers of Liberty by Shannon McNear — A collection of three stories from America’s struggle for independence…The Highwayman: 1775, the Shenandoah Valley: A secret identity … an unspoken love. Quiet, ordinary Samuel Wheeler wants to quit moonlighting as a vigilante, until the night he unwittingly saves the girl he loves. Defending Truth: 1780, the Overmountain settlements: For Truth Bledsoe, what began as simple Christian charity toward a starving enemy soon becomes … more. And the fate of her family—and their community—may rest in the hands of a loyalist who is no longer sure where he belongs; The Counterfeit Tory: 1781, the South Carolina backcountry: War-weary Jedidiah Wheeler accepts a mission of subterfuge that almost certainly will be his end. It’s the quiet, fierce daughter of a Tory innkeeper who gives him cause not only to fight, but stay alive. (Historical Romance from ShenandoahDawn)
Murmur in the Mudcaves by Kathleen Denly — He came to cook for ranch hands, not three single women. Gideon Swift, a visually impaired Civil War Veteran, responds to an ad for a ranch cook in the Southern California desert mountains. He wants nothing more than to forget his past and stay in the kitchen where he can do no harm. But when he arrives to find his employer murdered, the ranch turned to ashes, and three young women struggling to survive in the unforgiving Borrego Desert, he must decide whether his presence protects them or places them in greater danger. Bridget “Biddie” Davidson finally receives word from her older sister who disappeared with their brother and pa eighteen years prior, but the news is not good. Determined to help her family, Biddie sets out for a remote desert ranch with her adopted father and best friend. Nothing she finds there is as she expected, including the man who came to cook for the shambles of a ranch. When tragedy strikes, the danger threatens not only her plans to help her sister, but her own dreams for the future—with the man who’s stolen her heart. (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)
Revealing the Truth by Lorri Dudley — being shipped back to her ruthless guardian, who will kill to get his hands on her inheritance and the famous Jenkins Lipizzaner horses. But even under the pretense of amnesia, she cannot shake the memory of her sister and Katherine’s need to reach her before their guardian, or his marauding bandits, finish her off. Will she be safe in the earl’s manor, or will the assailant climbing through her window be the death of her? British spy, Stephen Hartington’s assignment to uncover an underground horse-thieving ring brings him home to his family’s manor, and the last thing he expected was to be struck with a candlestick upon climbing through the guest chamber window. The manor’s feisty and intriguing new house guest throws Stephen’s best-laid plans into turmoil and raises questions about the timing of her appearance, the convenience of her memory loss, and her impeccable riding skills. Could he be housing the horse thief he’d been ordered to capture—or worse, falling in love with her? (Historical Romance from Wild Heart Books)
The Counterfeit Tory by Shannon McNear — 1781 … the backcountry of South Carolina: Lizzy Cunningham resents any man who thinks he can get by with a wink and a smile. Doubly so the ones who try to get close to her—she knows she’s homely and difficult of temper, and that not a man has been made who can bear with her for a lifetime.
Jedidiah Wheeler (Sam’s cousin from The Highwayman) has always depended on his easy charm to get him through. He’s also used to girls falling all over themselves when he glances their way, so it’s a shock to find one who responds with definite hostility. It might also be a bit of a challenge … especially when he discovers her connection to an infamous Tory leader he’s tasked with bringing down. As Jed gains the trust of the Tories, he sees that Lizzy is far more than the snarling tavern maid she pretends to be. Truth be told, in her unguarded moments she’s one of the most fetching misses he’s ever met—and bravest, when his own life is on the line. How can he complete the mission without endangering her? And dare Lizzy risk family loyalty for a kindness she’s sure is too good to be true? (Historical Romance from ShenandoahDawn)
The Keys to Gramercy Park by Candice Sue Patterson — Investigative historical journalist Andrea Andrews is tired of waiting tables to make ends meet. If she could find and write the next breakout story, she could secure a promotion with Smithsonian Magazine as their writer-at-large. But not much happens in lower Manhattan out of the ordinary until she discovers post-Civil War counterfeit bills hidden in the wall of her historic district apartment.
Politics have always been Beau Davidson-Quincy’s passion, despite his family’s real estate empire. His clean image and single status make him a target in the media as he prepares to build his campaign for New York governor. He has nothing to hide until a cute waitress unravels a mystery that could destroy his family’s reputation.
Two centuries earlier, wounded Civil War veteran Franklin Davidson lost everything—his house, his wife, his standing in society. In his darkest moment, he’s awarded a position with the newly formed Secret Service to combat the spread of counterfeit U.S. currency. His life and new home in Gramercy Park are the envy of his peers, but nothing is as it seems. Secrets are meant to be kept, and Franklin will take his to his grave. (Historical Romance from Barbour Publishing)
To Enchant a Lady’s Heart by Robin Lee Hatcher — He has nothing to offer. She has everything to lose. Despite the dishonorable circumstances of his own birth, Adam Faulkner has never begrudged his half-brother Sebastian’s legitimate position as the Viscount Willowthorpe. Having a title and everything that goes with it never mattered to Adam—until “everything” became the hand of Miss Eliza Southwick. Adam knows, as the stable manager at Hooke Manor, he shouldn’t hope to wed a well-born miss. After all, enchanting such a lady’s heart would take a true gentleman…something he is not. Eliza Southwick loves horses more than society and doesn’t care a whit about status or titles. But her father has set his sights on the Viscount Willowthorpe for his future son-in-law and has brought his daughter to Hooke Manor in hopes of arranging a marriage contract. When a spark first kindled during a chance meeting between Eliza and Adam grows stronger, she doesn’t dare tell her father how she feels. He will disown her entirely if she fails to do his will, and the cost of following her heart has never seemed higher. (Historical Romance from RobinSong, Inc.)
East of Evil by Joni M. Fisher — A colossal fortune. A secret reaper. A young woman whose drive for due process makes her the target of dangerous people…Nefi Jenkins dreams of becoming an FBI agent. After outing her parents’ heartless killer, the Harvard grad focuses on getting into a stellar criminal justice master’s degree program. But her career goals take a back seat when she inherits a ten-million-dollar trust from her late parents…with a hefty chunk gone. Seeking the help of a forensic accountant, Nefi discovers a cunning thief has been stealing from her inheritance. And with her legacy at stake, the hidden enemy’s scheme to swipe her cash could turn deadly. Can Nefi restore her parent’s wealth before her investigation turns fatal? (Thriller/Suspense/Crime, Independently Published)
A Deadly Wilderness by Kelly S. Irvin — A frantic anonymous crisis center hot-line call propels counselor Susana Martinez-Acosta smack into the center of a murder investigation and a homicide detective’s arms. Exactly where she doesn’t want to be. Following the tragic death of her husband, she’s struggled to build a safe haven for herself and her son. That new world doesn’t include hit men and persistent detectives with dangerous jobs. An idyllic wilderness hike turns deadly when homicide detective Ray Johnson tumbles into a ravine and lands on a corpse later identified as the son of a prominent citizen. Ray works to solve the political hot potato murder before city leaders bumps him from the case. His determination to find the man’s killer leads him from the wealthiest enclaves in San Antonio to the city’s dark underbelly, all the while trying to win the woman he loves. (Thriller/Suspense/Romantic from Ally Press)
Counter Attack by Patricia Bradley — No sooner has Alexis Stone been sworn in as the interim sheriff for Russell County, Tennessee, when a serial killer dubbed the Queen’s Gambit Killer strikes again–this time in her hometown. Pearl Springs is just supposed to be a temporary stop along the way to Alex’s real dream: becoming the first female police chief of Chattanooga. But the killer’s calling card–a white pawn and a note with a chess move printed on it–cannot be ignored. Pearl Springs chief of police Nathan Landry can’t believe that his high school sweetheart Alexis (he refuses to call her Alex) is back in town, and he can’t help wanting to protect the woman he never stopped loving. But as the danger mounts and the killer closes in, can Nathan come through on the promises he makes to himself to bring a killer to justice before it’s too late. (Thriller/Suspense/Romantic from Revell)
Explosive Trail by Terri Reed — Can an officer and her K-9 partner survive a bomber with a vendetta? When a serial bomber’s explosion in Olympic National Park lands K-9 officer Willow Bates in the hospital, her estranged husband, FBI agent Theo Bates, rushes to her side. He’s determined to protect her and the baby he didn’t know she was carrying. But the bomber has revenge on his mind and will stop at nothing to finish them off. (Thriller/Suspense/Romantic from Love Inspired/Harlequin)
Vengeance in the Mist by Robin Patchen — Assistant District Attorney Misty Lake wants nothing more than to ensure Boston lawbreakers face justice, but how can she when she’s faced with an increasing workload and pressure to offer plea deals? When a criminal she prosecuted is released on a technicality, she doesn’t have time to worry about the threats he once breathed against her. Tate Steele dreams of rising in the ranks at the DA’s office, but idealistic prosecutor Misty is in his way. When the district attorney asks him to assist her with a few cases, he’s eager to close them quickly to prove his merit. But he and Misty discover her apartment has been broken into, and this is no run-of-the-mill burglar. The intruder escapes and leaves no trace. Either the vengeful convict Misty put away has upped his skills, or there’s more at play than a defendant seeking revenge. (Thriller/Suspense/Romantic, Independently Published)
Plus check out these recent additions to Fiction Finder published within the past month:
Holidays in Hallbrook: Books 1-3 by Elsie Davis, A city executive who gets an insta-family including a giant St. Bernard, an event planner who can’t plan what happens, and a Christmas story where a snowstorm and an avalanche have the power to warm hearts. (Contemporary Romance)
Holidays in Hallbrook: Books 4-6 by Elsie Davis , A single dad with twin daughters who aren’t on board with a new romance, a woman who’s always wanted to be a mom and she gets the chance…temporarily, and a single mother who’s hired to find and photograph a pair of eagles and their nest after a reported sighting in the area. (Contemporary Romance)
Holidays in Hallbrook: Books 7-9 by Elsie Davis , A woman war hero in search of her military canine, an ice cream competition with a winner-take-all prize at stake, and a baseball player and a middle school principal who find themselves at crosshairs with their kids adding fuel to the fire every step of the way. (Contemporary Romance)
Hopefully After After by Beth Wiseman, Eden’s and Samuel’s futures hang in the balance as they face decisions about who they are meant to be—both as individuals and together. (Amish Romance)
Jacob’s Wellby Urcelia Teixeira, Dark secrets swirl around the small coastal town of Weyport as Mary-Jean Foley discovers just how far she would go to protect her son. (Mystery/Police Procedural)
Loving Lydia by Susan Pope Sloan, Two Southerners thrown together by the Union army. He’s on a quest for vengeance. She’s determined to preserve her family. (Historical Romance)
The Body Electrocution by Marissa Shrock, A secret love decades past, the supposed ghost of a custodian that stalks the community center halls, and a motive for murder that neither Bobbi Sue nor anyone else in town saw coming. (Cozy Mystery)
Megan Bessing recently stopped by my blog to share some about her writing life.
Why did you start writing romantic suspense novels?
I’ve written in a few different genres, however, despite enjoying suspense/mystery television shows, writing suspense always intimidated me. So when Sunrise Publishing had an open audition to potentially learn how to write suspense with a well-known author, I thought it could be the perfect opportunity. And I’m so glad I was given the chance to learn under Lisa Phillips. Because of her mentorship, I can now say I’m a suspense author. Plus, there are more suspense books in my future.
What is your favorite spot for reading or reflecting on your current work-in-progress?
I have what I call my writing room. However, it’s less like a room and more like an outdoor shed. Originally, my husband built a tiny building at my in-laws to be used as a greenhouse. Pretty much the entire front is covered in windows and a glass door. Recently, my in-laws no longer wanted it, so they moved the building to our house, and we put it by our lake. My husband then put electricity in there for me to run my computer and also a fan or heater depending on the weather. My writing “shed” is just large enough for a desk on one side and a lawn chair on the other, but it’s quiet, and I love looking out at the water while I’m writing.
What’s your go-to when you need a pick-me-up to keep writing?
It can be as simple as just stopping to pray. I also often go for a walk around our lake. And another cup or tea or a snack goes a long way in helping my brain power through.
What did you want to be as a child (and did that dream come true)?
I wanted to be a kindergarten teacher, and then secretly a ballerina. But no, neither of those wishes actually came true—though I have spent many years having kids in my home and teaching outside the school. I did finally take my first ballet class when I was in my early twenties. I’m currently quite content being an author and teaching my own children, plus kids at our church. However, I wouldn’t mind taking another ballet class again.
What is one of your favorite ways to connect with readers?
Instagram is probably my favorite. I think I share the most of my personality on there. But Facebook is where my readers tend to open up to me the most, and I love that as well.
Which of your books is your favorite and why?
My favorite suspense book I’ve written so far is Expired Hope. I love the themes of hope, healing, and happily-ever-after it shares with readers.
Megan Besing adores happily-ever-afters filled with hope and humor. She lives in a pocket-size Indiana town with her husband, their children, some chickens and a dog. She’s always planning a road trip, but her favorite place may just be on her front porch drinking tea.
What will it cost him to save her from the flames?
Veteran and therapist Natalie Atkinson is all about facing fears and surviving. After all, she’s been there, done that, and she’s ready for a new future in Last Chance County. Even if it includes helping the incoming fire chief confront his own issues to lead his fractured team.
Fire Chief Macon James has finally come home to do the job he’s always longed for, and he doesn’t need a therapist interfering with the running of his crew. More, she’s put them in jeopardy by insisting she “train with them”—a liability that might just get them killed. The way he sees it, she’s just another counsellor, interfering in ways that destroy lives.
When an explosion destroys her car, it seems Natalie is a magnet for trouble. Is she the target of a stalker? Macon has no choice but to stick around and find out. But getting close to Natalie means discovering her secrets…and risking the chance she’ll discover his.
But her so-called stalker isn’t giving up. And when his worst fears ignite, with Natalie right in the middle, Macon will have to become the leader the team so desperately needs if they hope to save her life.
Courage in the Storm by Laurel M. Blount — Since witnessing the murder of her beloved parents, Miriam Hochstedler suffers from paralyzing anxiety and a deep-seated fear of the Englisch. Unwilling to venture beyond her family’s Tennessee farm, she forms a close bond with a badly injured gelding. Like Miriam herself, the traumatized animal seems unlikely to recover—until skilled horse whisperer Reuben Brenneman arrives. A survivor of an abusive childhood, Reuben understands fear better than most. He’ll do whatever it takes to help a terrified animal, but his compassion doesn’t extend to the church that turned a blind eye to his family’s suffering. Once he finishes this job, he’ll return to the Englisch world, putting his Amish heritage behind him forever. As Miriam works alongside Reuben, battling the horse’s fear—and her own—an unexpected friendship blooms and deepens into romance. But the Amish faith that sustains her inspires only distrust in Reuben, and the Englisch world he’s chosen has already broken her heart once. Falling in love was easy. But staying together will take all the courage they have. (Contemporary Romance, Berkley)
Hopefully Ever After by Beth Wiseman — Sixteen-year-old Eden Hale doesn’t want to be defined by her current circumstances. With absent parents and a troubled past, Eden refuses to become what people expect. When she is sent to live with an Amish cousin she’s never met in Montgomery, Indiana, she welcomes the chance to become the person she wants to be without the burden of anyone’s judgment. Her hopes are confirmed when she meets Samuel, a young Amish man who seems to like her for who she really is. Samuel Byler has grown up with strict Amish parents, and they aren’t happy that their only son is choosing to spend his free time with an outsider. As Eden and Samuel grow closer, disapproval swirls around the young couple. It isn’t long before Eden starts to doubt herself and wonders if she is doomed to repeat the mistakes of her own past, whether she wants to or not. Meanwhile, Samuel finds himself slipping further and further from his faith—to Eden’s dismay. Both Eden’s and Samuel’s futures hang in the balance as they face decisions about who they are meant to be—both as individuals and together. (Amish Romance, HarperCollins Christian Publishing)
Holding on to Hope by Janet W. Ferguson — Hope Rodriguez loves planning weddings. There’s nothing more special than helping a bride become a princess for a day, but she’s not sure that’s her calling in life anymore. If only she had her own special someone. Her only current prospect leaves her with more questions than answers about where she falls in his list of priorities. Yet, when a lifelong friend asks her to plan a destination wedding across the country in only two weeks, she’ll have to figure out how to pull off the impossible…alone. After being burned as a child and deserted by his family, Caleb Donnelly has an intimate relationship with pain. Despite all he’s endured, one ache refuses to leave him—the throbbing in his heart where Hope is concerned. So when Hope needs help with their friend’s wedding, he can’t stop himself from volunteering to travel two thousand miles to Jackson, Wyoming. As long as he keeps his feelings in check, he might not ruin their friendship. Because a beautiful woman like Hope could never love a scarred man like him. When Hope and Caleb’s plans go up in flames, it’s their hearts that might never recover. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)
Home Away From Home by Penny Frost McGinnis — When Marigold Hayes turned fourteen, her mother died, and her father went missing. For forty years, she searched for her dad and lived a quiet life on Abbott Island, until she met Johnny. As her love for Johnny grows, her sorrow from the relentless search for her father breaks her heart. She begs God to help her move forward with her life before she has no love left to give. Then three mysterious strangers show up who could change her life. Johnny Papadakis moved to Abbott Island ten years ago. His ex-wife had pushed him away and discouraged him from having a relationship with their daughter. After years of hard work, his restaurant flourishes, so does his relationship with Marigold. As he seeks Marigold’s hand in marriage, his daughter shows up on his doorstep, looking for a place to call home. Can Marigold and Johnny settle the past and move toward the promise of a blessed future? (Contemporary Romance, from Mt. Zion Ridge Press)
Now or Never by Emily Conrad — If Tim Bergeron got a lifetime achievement award for anything, it’d be managing the iconic rock band, Awestruck, but he’d trade his successful career for the opportunity to prevent his daughter from repeating his mistakes. When a health scare proves time is short, he talks Isabella into a cross-country road trip. His attempts to talk her out of a hasty marriage drive a wedge between them, and it looks like the best he can hope for from the trip is scouting out promising new talent to represent. That is, until he meets Gabby.
Widow Gabrielle Voss has responsibilities to her daughter and patients, deep roots in the community, and a dream that scares her. Though she’d never utter it to the people she lives and works among, the truth slips out with Tim, who’s not in Many Oaks, Iowa, to stay. As her fiftieth birthday party draws near and an attraction to Tim sparks to life, Gabby realizes she must pursue her dream now—or, more reasonably, never. (Contemporary Romance, Independently Published)
The Baby Inheritance by Tina Radcliffe — After the tragic loss of his best friends, rancher Drew Morgan willingly accepts guardianship of their six-month-old baby—until he learns big-city professor Sadie Ross has temporary custody as well. Opposites in every way, the pair now has eight weeks together on Drew’s ranch to decide who will become the permanent parent. Could this makeshift family turn into something real…before the deadline is up? (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired/Harlequin)
The Rancher’s Sanctuary by Linda Goodnight — Could facing her fears…Heal her damaged heart? Physically and emotionally scarred, reclusive cowgirl Monroe Matheson prefers rescue dogs over handsome men. But when Nathan Garrison arrives in town, determined to fix up the guest ranch next door, he needs all the help he can get. Before long, Monroe knows there’s more to this stranger than meets the eye. Can working with a man carrying tragic memories be the key to overcoming Monroe’s wounds—both inside and out?. (Contemporary Romance from Love Inspired/Harlequin)
Dawn’s Untrodden Green by Carolyn Miller — Not much happens in Theodosia Stapleton’s tiny Northumberland village. She has resigned herself to spinsterhood, caring for her ailing mother in the home of her grandfather, known to the locals as “General Contrary.” When her dear friend dies and leaves behind a daughter, it’s simple enough to take the child into her own quiet world. That is, until her ward’s famous uncle unexpectedly arrives and throws Theo’s tidy orbit completely off-kilter. Fame was the last thing Daniel Balfour sought when he fought in the Peninsular War. But his brave exploits caught the attention of the King, and now the honors he was given hound him everywhere . . . even on his rushed trip to rescue his orphaned niece. Theo’s quick wit and warm smile reassure him that Rebecca is in good hands, and he finds himself free to swiftly return to London and his responsibilities. But those caring hands are beginning to look like they could also safely hold his heart, and he’s tempted to linger. Unfortunately, marriage is simply not in the cards; the army is spouse enough for him. Then an accident and a scandal lead both Theo and Daniel to discover that their best-laid plans may not have been what God designed for them after all. (Historical Romance from Kregel Publications)
The Whispering Wind by Janalyn Voight — Phoebe can have her pick of suitors but never the man she wants. Fancy parties and embroidered fans hold little appeal for Phoebe Walsh. She would rather gallop across the open range or help her father with a wounded calf. Of her many admirers, none spark her interest. Ma seems determined to save her from becoming a spinster, but how can Phoebe accept her mother’s choice of suitors when her heart belongs elsewhere? Several years have passed since Will Canfield stole a kiss and her heart. Remembering her passionate response still curls her insides, but how she feels doesn’t matter. Will’s interest in her isn’t serious, as he’s made clear. She needs to get over the man. If Uncle Con will stop throwing them together, that could be a whole lot easier. Will feels guilty about Phoebe, but he can’t risk another heartbreak. Being left at the altar certainly changed his mind about romance. Phoebe is better off marrying someone else, even if the idea sets his teeth on edge. Phoebe and Will must both, with God’s help, conquer an old fear before they can move ahead with their lives. Set during a troubled time in America, the Montana Gold series explores faith, courage, and love in the Wild West. (Historical Romance from Mountain Brook Ink)
Charleston Light by Laurie Larsen, Dianne Miley, Annette Wiley, Jody Stallings, Laurie Ingram Sibley, Kelsey R. Budd, Melissa Henderson, Christina Sinisi: — A collection of faith-filled novellas all inspired by Charleston Light, the wonderfully awkward-looking lighthouse that sits on the shore of Sullivan’s Island, South Carolina. The stories range from sweet romance to time travel to fantasy to a modern retelling of a beloved fairy tale. You will definitely find something you love on these pages! (Biblical Romance from Random Moon Books)
Perfectly Matched by Liana George — Nicki Mayfield is getting married! Or is she? Three days after deciding to marry so she can adopt the young Chinese girl who has captured her heart, Nicki Mayfield heads to Texas to become Mrs. Ben Carrington. However, as the unlikely pair prepares to say, “I do,” a shocking revelation threatens their plans to become a family. While searching for the answers to the mystery holding her future hostage, Nicki must also keep Ms. O’Connor’s legacy alive at New Hope Orphanage – whose future is at serious risk. As she and Ben work toward building their unconventional family, they discover that sacrificial parenting requires putting the child first in ways that bring indescribable joy and unexpected heartbreak to everyone involved. In the end, will Nicki find her happily ever after or will circumstances stop her from being perfectly matched in work, life, and love? (General Contemporary from Scrivening’s Press)
War of Torment by Ronie Kendig — hey followed him back. Against his will, against his intention. Now enemies threaten from every direction. Amidst it all Marco Dusan struggles to lead his people, to help them survive, even mayhap win the war. He will take any advantage to even the odds. But only after tragedy strikes does he learn just how much he’s willing to sacrifice. He’s not alone. Droserans fight as one, united against the offworlders—Symmachians who covet their planet. With the aid of unexpected allies, the Droserans battle on longer than anyone could have anticipated. Yet they cannot win. And the Faa’Cris, those supernatural warriors, fair of face and fierce of mien, do nothing. But not all have turned their backs. After a bitter year of pain and loss, Kersei Dragoumis navigates a new heritage, ever intent on defending her people. Like her, light-years away from the Quadrants and even farther from the girl she thought she was, Eija Zacdari must come to terms with a new role. Or, rather, with an ancient one. And her success or failure may determine back in the Quadrants who lives and who dies. In the end, Marco will have vengeance for the torment brought by this war. No matter the price. Not even if the price is his soul. (Speculative Fiction from Enclave Publishing)
Expired Hope by Megan Besing — She battled every fire she ever faced. He’s risking everything for the chance to belong. Veteran and therapist Natalie Atkinson watched her Army career explode in her face. Seeking a new future in Last Chance County doesn’t start so well when she’s the one being rescued from a client’s burning house. To make matters worse, now she’s stuck evaluating the truck and rescue squads for the fire department. When the chief overhears why she left her last job, she’s determined to prove to him and her boss that she’s still the right therapist to assess his crew. No matter if success takes everything she’s got. Fire Chief Macon James is the right man for the job. He doesn’t need a therapist interfering with the running of his crew or putting his position in jeopardy when a counselor is what tore his family apart. He’s got to get his firefighters to be a team, and he can do it without Natalie’s help. After an explosion destroys her car, it quickly becomes clear she might need him as much as everyone thinks he needs her. If these two stubborn hearts will surrender, they could have everything they want. Or it could all go down in flames. (Romantic Suspense from Sunrise Publishing)
Plus check out these recent additions to Fiction Finder published within the past month:
God’s ABCs by Joan C. Benson, With the playfulness of an alphabet tale, the main characters, letters A-Z, parade into the story with their unique talents and interests on display. (Children’s Picture Books)
Multi-published author Kerry Johnson recently stopped by my blog to share some about her writing life.
What did you want to be as a child (and did that dream come true)? I love animals, so initially I wanted to be a veterinarian. But once I realized that involved blood, surgery and animals being scared of me, that didn’t stick. I had always loved books and reading, and I spent a great deal of my childhood in the Connecticut woods talking to myself. Making up characters and acting out as them. Creating dialogue in my mind, then pretending to be those characters. I remember feeling like a weirdo until my late teens, when I read about another author doing that…having conversations with her characters. Finally, it clicked that I just might be a writer. My degree is in English education, but I didn’t begin seriously writing stories until my early thirties, when my boys were past the toddler age. So yes, I’d say my dream of making up characters in stories came true.
What’s the hardest part of writing romantic suspense? The crime element tends to trip me up as I write the first draft. I don’t watch a lot of crime movies and shows, and making myself more familiar with law enforcement procedures and rules has been a must. I’m grateful for CPs (critique partners) and editors who have helped with that. I also don’t plot much (I’m more of a pantser, when authors just make it up as we go), and nailing down the villain’s motives can be tricky, too.
How do you pick the location/setting of your romantic suspense novels? In my current series, I chose a location we visited a few years ago on a family vacation then fictionalized it. The tunnel in Tunnel Creek Ambush is based on Stumphouse Mountain Tunnel in Walhalla, S.C. My first book, Snowstorm Sabotage, took place in a ski resort after we visited one a couple years ago. When I go to a place and really connect to the physical environment, then my imagination goes into overdrive imagining a crime here, and the people involved in the crime. My next series will be set in a beautiful National Forest that we visit every summer (my husband’s family has a cottage there).
What’s the weirdest way someone has died or been killed in your novels? In Tunnel Creek Ambush, one of the bad guys jumps from a second story window in the dark, trying to get away from my hero. Unfortunately for him, he lands on a sharp metal fence spire in the backyard garden area. The fence wins.
About Kerry Kerry Johnson has been conversing with fictional characters and devouring books since her childhood in the Connecticut woods. A long-time member of American Christian Fiction Writers, she’s a seven-time Genesis contest finalist and two-time winner. Kerry lives on the sunny, stormy west coast of Florida with her family, a lazy boxer and a temperamental sun conure, and way too many books. She loves Jesus, long walks, all creatures great and small, and iced chai tea. Her first book with Love Inspired Suspense, Snowstorm Sabotage, released September 2021. Tunnel Creek Ambush releases April 25, 2023.
Tunnel Creek Ambush Danger lurks in the shadows…and a police dog is keeping watch.
Officer Jasper Holt never thought he’d see his high school girlfriend, Kinsley Miller, again—much less become her protector. But when the wildlife biologist returns home for her aunt’s funeral, she’s attacked twice in a matter of hours. With his K-9 partner at his side, the single father will protect Kinsley with his life. But can they uncover the reason behind the assaults…before the next strike becomes the last?