Monday, June 22, 2015

COTT's Sizzling Summer Reading Clash!


Looking for some awesome take-me-away Summer Reading?

Check out these new releases and I dare you to tell me which one you'd put on the top of your reading list. We offer contemporary and historical romance, a little fantasy, danger, mystery, suspense!
Vote for your next most likely read, and leave the author a word of encouragement, then share with your friends. 

Scroll down, vote in the survey box, and come back next week for the Reveal!

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Fantasy

Rachel A. James

To unite the kingdoms and bring peace, Princess Alena must enter into a royal marital alliance, but when the handsome physician, Sherwin, befalls her, matters become complicated. Torn between obligations to her young son and country, she faces a difficult decision, will Alena obey the king’s orders, or choose to follow her heart?
*****

Romance

Jennifer Rodewald

Friendship, love, and then betrayal...for Jamie Carson one thing becomes clear: Andrew needs a savior, and she cannot be it. Will Andrew allow the hand of grace to redeem his legacy of addiction, or will he and Jamie remain the casualties of heartbreak?
*****

Suspense

Heather Day Gilbert 

Tess Spencer loves her low-key job at the Crystal Mountain Spa, which allows her plenty of down-time with her one-year old daughter and lawyer husband, Thomas. But when a pool installation turns up eight skeletons in the spa's back yard, Tess becomes entangled in a sleuthing job destined to go awry...even as she sifts through layers of deceit, Tess realizes too late that a serial killer's sights have zeroed in on her.
*****

Contemporary Romance

Amanda Cabot 

Marisa St. George has lost her dream job and come home to manage the struggling Rainbow’s End resort in the small Texas town where she grew up. The only silver lining is Blake Kendall, a new guest who is making her believe in love at first sight. But is he really who she thinks he is? 
*****

Historical Romance

Sarah Loudin Thomas 

When family tragedy derails Henry Phillips’s college studies, he consoles himself with his fiddle and the family farm. His grandmother’s helper, Margaret Hoffman, is always around, ready to push his buttons, and it seems she doesn’t care about his troubles. But Margaret has her own problems. Henry and Margaret soon find themselves relying on each other as they face potential loss and find healing in the most surprising places. 
*****
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Monday, May 25, 2015

COTT's April New Releases


Hostess: Michelle Massaro

Writing Gladiators.... Step into the ARENA!

Welcome to another Clash here at Clash of the Titles! Below are FIVE New Releases, hot off the presses in April, for your entertainment. They all look wonderful to us, but YOU will decide which one takes Top Honors this month.

Please check out the covers and descriptions below and vote for the one that most appeals to you. The one that would be at the top of your To-Be-Read Pile. You may vote ONCE, and the polls will remain open through next Tuesday night.


http://www.amazon.com/Captive-Imposter-Everstone-Chronicles-Book-ebook/dp/B00VKLN3JS


The Captive Imposter by Dawn Crandall

Sent away for protection, hotel heiress Estella Everstone is living under an assumed name in the awkward presence of her ex-fiance. However, as hotel manager Dexter Blakeley, slowly captures her heart, will the layers of family secrets and the knowledge of her true identity end up severing his love for her?


Diamonds or Donuts by Lucie Ulrich

With her wedding put on hold, and her fiance halfway across the world, Sarah Alexander makes some much-needed changes. A new job in a new town are just what she needs to wait out her fiance's absence, but what is she to do when a handsome policeman enters the picture?


Pesto & Potholes by Susan M. Baganz

Renata moves to escape the monsters of her past and finds refuge at a church in and in the friendship of Antonio. Savory pesto combine with the inevitable potholes in the process of healing define their journey to . . . love.


Sedona Sunset by Tanya Stowe

Alexander Summers investigates art theft for UNESCO. His quest for the source of priceless pottery leads him on collision course with Lara Fallon's search for answers, putting her heart and her life in danger.


Waking Beauty by Sarah E. Morin

When fairy-Gifted Princess Brierly opens her eyes after a century-long snooze and finds a guy hovering over her with puckered lips, can she trust he’s not just another dream? What if Sleeping Beauty refused to wake up? Create your own user feedback survey

Monday, May 18, 2015

COTT: Introducing Biblical Fiction Author Stephanie Landsem



This week Clash of the Titles is proud to feature Stephanie Landsem, author of The Living Water biblical fiction series. She will carry you back into the times of Jesus and explore beautiful truths that resonate deeply with readers.

Let's hear from Stephanie about her books and how she handles the interesting challenge of writing about Jesus.


1.) What was your favorite part of writing The Living Water series?
Research is the part of writing I love best. I usually spend about a month just doing research before I start plotting a book. I find some of my best plot twists, characters and settings right in the pages of history. Maps and pictures of archeological finds really help me get the feel for the setting. As I craft the story, this research comes out and helps the reader become fully immersed in the story.

2) How do you balance the real person of Jesus with the other characters in your story?
I like to think of every encounter with Jesus recorded in the Bible as a stone thrown in a pond. We know the initial splash — the cure of the man born blind, or the raising of Lazarus — but I want to write about the ripples. I love to imagine how these personal encounters with Jesus moved outward in ever-widening circles to touch more people than we can even imagine. So I start with the event described in the Bible and move outward into imagination, always keeping in mind that Jesus knew exactly what ripple-effect his actions would have and they would always be for his father’s glory.

3.) What are the binding themes throughout the Well, The Thief and the Tomb and what do hope to bring to your readers in this series?
I love the gospel of John and how it shows the very personal way in which Jesus connected with the people of his time. Each of the stories in The Living Water Series begin with an encounter with Jesus from John—the Samaritan woman, the man born blind, and Jesus’ relationship with Martha. Each of these encounters were intensely personal and led to deep conversion. I hope that in reading about these one-to-one meetings with Jesus, readers can imagine themselves face to face with our Lord and come to know him more deeply.




The Living Water Series are a set of intersecting stories based on personal encounters with Jesus in the gospel of John. The first book, The Well, is the story of the Samaritan woman at the well told from the point of view of her daughter, Mara. Mara, a desperate Samaritan girl, must make a dangerous journey across Galilee to find Jesus and save her dying mother. The second book focuses on Jesus ministry in Jerusalem, starting with the healing of the man born blind and continuing on to Jesus’ arrest, crucifixion and resurrection. It is told from the perspective of a poor Jewish girl and a Roman centurion – both of whom don’t know what to think of the so-called Messiah. The Tomb, A Novel of Martha, is—of course—about the family of Lazarus in Bethany. It focuses on Martha, her doubts and anxieties, and finally the desperate decision she must make to save her brother’s life.


~ * ~



Stephanie Landsem, author of The Living Water Series, writes historical fiction because she loves adventure in far-off times and places. In real life, she’s explored ancient ruins, medieval castles, and majestic cathedrals around the world. Stephanie is equally happy at home in Minnesota with her husband, four children, and three fat cats. When she’s not writing, she’s feeding the ravenous horde, avoiding housework, and dreaming about her next adventure—whether it be in person or on the page.


Connect with her online:
stephanielandsem.com
https://www.facebook.com/stephanielandsem
https://twitter.com/#!/stephlandsem
http://pinterest.com/slandsem/

Sunday, April 26, 2015

COTT: March Releases Clash

Welcome to our March release Clash!

Spring is coming, and we have some amazing backyard patio reads for you. Take a look at the compelling covers below and answer one question: Which one is a MUST for your to-be-read pile?

Go ahead and vote below. Be sure to check back for the winner on Thursday, April 30!

Follow the Amazon link below each book if you want to learn more or purchase a book. Don't we have some amazing titles this month?

And on with the clash!


The Tomb, a Novel of Martha

by Stephanie Landsem

Everyone in Bethany admires Martha, the ideal Jewish woman, but only she knows the price she's paid for her perfect reputation. You'll never see the story of Martha, Mary, and Lazarus the same way again.

Find it on amazon







Andrea and the Five Day Challenge
by Cindy K. Green

A Bible Study Challenge, a Prayer Journal, and Homecoming, the combination just might change her life.

Find it on Amazon








Nila's Hope
by Kathleen Friesen

She has survived years of abuse. Can an apprentice carpenter's faith overcome the danger now stalking her?

Find it on Amazon








Broken Silence
by Annslee Urban

SHE'S HIDING A DEADLY SECRET…and someone wants to make sure Amber Talbot never reveals it. The person charged with protecting her is police detective Patrick Wiley—the fiancĂ© she walked away from but never forgot and now he must save her from an unknown attacker from their past.

Find it on Amazon





The Hawk and the Dove
by Penelope Wilcock

A young girl learns the stories of a group of monks in fourteenth century Yorkshire. They lived six centuries ago, yet their struggles are our own—finding our niche; coping with failure; living with impossible people; and discovering that we are the impossible ones.

Find it on Amazon


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Monday, April 20, 2015

COTT brings you "Entrusted" by Julie Arduini, plus Olympia Winner!


Before we bring you our featured novel, Clash of the Titles wishes to congratulate Kelly Goshorn manuscript "A Love Restored" for taking home the crown during our Olympia Awards.
Congrats, Kelly!
The Olympia is COTT's annual contest for pre-published authors.
To learn more about the Olympia and Kelly Goshorn, please visit us at

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If you enjoy a sweet romance in a quaint village, you’ll love Julie Arduini’s debut novel. She fills the town with delightful and insightful characters. The story has a good balance of humor, wisdom and love. Buy this book, wrap up in a warm blanket with a cup of team, and snuggle in for a great read.
                                                                    --Amazon customer



About the book:
Jenna Anderson, sassy city-girl from Youngstown, Ohio, plows–literally–into Adirondack village, Speculator Falls, with a busted GPS. She gets a warning from the sheriff but has ideas for the senior center to prove she belongs in town as their director. Town councilman Ben Regan is as broken as the flower box Jenna demolished. He’s grieving and wants to shut down the center before there’s too much change and heartbreak. They work on community projects and build a slow relationship, but the council needs to vote on the senior center’s future. Can Jenna show Ben both her and the center are worth trusting?

PURCHASE

Special offer from the author, Julie Arduini!

Subscribe for free to the Julie Arduini newsletter and receive her novella, Match Made in Heaven plus monthly installments to the sequel, Crumbs and Embers. To subscribe, visit the left sidebar of http://juliearduini.com to complete the form and watch for activation. 


What COTT voters had to say:
--Julie Arduini I love this book & am beyond thrilled to hold your passion in my hands. I am happy to be able to vote for you, but as you know, you've already won!!
--Julie Arduii can't wait to read this book.
--Julie Arduini so excited to see what God does with your book!!
--Love the cover and the novel Entrusted by Julie Arduini.
--Congratulations on your novel Julie Arduini!!!
--Julie Arduini, the setting of your book and the language brings me back home.
--May God keep blessing your writing ministry for Him, Julie Arduini
--Julie Arduini, this sounds like my kind of story. I like the term, "the fir flies."
--Entrusted had it all. I thoroughly enjoyed it and encourage others to check it out. Good job Julie A.
--Julie Arduini has a heart of passion and the gift of penmanship!!! What a Blessing!!
--Love the cover Julie Arduini!!
--Julie Arduini is one of my favorite people-- including one of my favorite authors. Love her book "Entrusted"!
--Just so exciting to watch God work in your life Julie Arduini . Surrendering your writing to Him and Wow look what he does ...and he's not done ! ??
--Julie, I loved the book. Thank you!! Blessings, Jenn
--Can't wait to read more from Julie Arduini! I'm hooked on her Adirondack series, the characters, the setting, and Julie's good writing!


The author shares how Entrusted came about:

My writing includes surrender issues and in Entrusted, Ben and Jenna both struggle. Jenna wants to
belong and Ben’s afraid of loss. They have to surrender those things to their Heavenly Father and trust that He’s taking care of them. Book 2 and 3 also give a clue to the surrender journey with Entangled and Engaged.

The book came about after my first visit to the real village of Speculator in the Adirondack Mountains of Upstate NY. As I walked the street and drank in the mountain air, the characters came alive. I’m excited to return to Speculator June 12 as I share my writing experience at the Lake Pleasant library. Then, starting June 25th I’m participating in an Entrusted book club in Youngstown where I plan to share exclusive footage of me visiting the places I used in Entrusted.

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Enjoy this trailer for The Love Boat Bachelor by Jerusha Agen and Theresa Anderson!



Find more great new releases all year at Clash of the Titles!

Monday, April 13, 2015

COTT: February Release Feature, plus FREE novella!



What a wonderful debut! It's a story of redemption and forgiveness and love. The author, Jessica R Patch, sucked me in on the first page. I couldn't put it down. I can't wait for her next book to be released. Wonderful writer. Highly recommended read, especially around Christmas time, but could be read anytime. It's that good.                                                                                              ~fan review



About the book:

A rowdy bar owner. A widowed pastor’s wife. And Christmas hope that brings them together.

After widower Eden Snow’s church almost burns to the ground, she’s compelled to find a temporary place to hold services and Christmas cantata practices.

Has-been hockey player, Knox Everhart, has a reputation for being fast on the ice and with women. Except Eden. She’s always been a fascinating mystery to him, which is why he agrees to let her use the back room of his bar—with one rule: No converting his customers.

But when Eden brings the church to the bar, it offers something the bottle can’t. Hope. And he finds himself falling in love with a woman and a Savior he feels unworthy to pursue.

PURCHASE


What COTT voters had to say:
--Jessica's my favorite! She is an awesome writer and a firecracker of a person.
--Jessica, your book sounds so hopeful for a season built on hope! Just what we need in these times. I look forward to reading your book.
--I throughly enjoyed Jessica Patch's "Under the Mistletoe" so my vote is for that! Can't wait for more in the series :)
--Hope Under Mistletoe by Jessica Patch has an intriguing fresh premise.
--Hope Under Mistletoe was a wonderful book! I loved how the story dealt with people getting through their hardships with the help of God. And as I told Jessica..it had the perfect romantic ending...And they lived happily ever after!!
--inspiring way to spread the message of Christ.
I loved Hope Under the Mistletoe! Jessica R. Patch created an inviting town, swoonworthy characters and just enough spice for this inspirational romance!
--A church in a bar? Really? Gotta read it...
Don't miss the free novella Jessica is offering!

Sign up for Jessica’s newsletter, Patched In, and receive the second novella in this Seasons of Hope Just the Way You Are, for FREE until April 22nd! Sign up HERE.
series,

Jessica hangs out on Facebook and Twitter so stop in and join the daily conversations. Also, don’t forget to stop by her Hope Under Mistletoe Pinterest board and meet the characters and take a peek at some of the scenes in the book!

About the free novella, Just the Way You Are:

When Pastor Gabe asks Audrey Gilbraith to use her mad florist skills to help him design a prayer garden, she’s all in, especially since it helps take her mind off the fact she’s about to lose her job and her apartment. But working closely with Gabe and not falling for him is complicated. She’s not pastor’s wife material, and she has the past to prove it.

Gabriel Brookson wants out of Audrey’s friend-zone, but when he pursues her romantically, he ruffles more than a few feathers in his congregation. How much is he willing to give up for this wonderful, quirky woman, and will Audrey accept him if he risks it all?



About the author: Jessica R. Patch lives in the mid-south where she pens inspirational contemporary romance and romantic suspense novels. When she’s not hunched over her laptop or going on adventurous trips in the name of research with willing friends, you can find her sneaking off to movies with her husband, watching way too much Netflix with her daughter, dominating her son at board games, and collecting recipes to amazing dishes she'll probably never cook. Her debut novel with Harlequin Love Inspired Suspense will release in January 2016. She is represented by Rachel Kent of Books & Such Literary Management



~Find more great new releases at Clash of the Titles.com!~

Saturday, April 4, 2015

Susan Aken: Psalm 103:14 -- We are Dust

 “How to Live Longer.”

“Add decades to your life with theses five simple tips.”

“50 ways to add years to your life.”

“Secrets of a long life.”

“100 ways to live to 100.”

Did any of these titles catch your eye? These are just a few of hundreds a Google search brought up in a few seconds. I think today more than ever people are obsessed with prolonging youth and living longer.

So, what if I do? What if I live to 100 or longer?

Life is still a puff of smoke.
Any way you look at it, this life is so brief it takes my breath away.

We are weak, fragile, temporary beings (physically) and God understands that.
He knows how weak we are.

As a father has compassion on his children, so the LORD has compassion on those who fear him; for he knows how we are formed, he remembers that we are dust. The life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.” Psalm 103:13-17

These bodies we live in are dust. The time we will spend living in them is like a flower that blooms in the morning and by evening it is gone. I have no strength of my own. I have no power. God understands that. He knows how weak I am. He sent Jesus to rescue us because He knew we were powerless to help ourselves. There are times when in my heart I want to do amazing, world changing acts yet I struggle to be patient with the ones I love. He knows I have no strength of my own. Yet in His graciousness, He allows me to have His strength. He calls me to trust in His strength. He knows I am going to make mistakes, get tired and sometimes (or often) fail in my attempts to follow Him. He knows and he loves me anyway! He allows me to have His strength.

When Paul was struggling with physical weakness, he asked God to take it away. He shared God’s reply in 2 Corinthians 12:9, “Each time he said, ‘My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.’ So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.”

Take a deep breath.

God knows you are going to make mistakes. He knows you can’t do everything you “should”. He loves you with an everlasting love and that will never change.

What He wants is for us to love Him, listen to Him and trust Him to be our strength.

In our weakness, we are made strong because His power shines in us. He takes these shells of clay and He uses them to do His will on earth. That is amazing!

Thank You, Lord, that you understand my weakness. You know I am living in a body made of dust. You know I have no strength of my own. Thank You for being willing to live in me through Your Holy Spirit. Please let Your strength show in my life.


Susan is a homemaker, substitute teacher and writer. She lives in Nebraska but was born and raised in Oklahoma. Her greatest love is for the Lord Jesus Christ who has redeemed her and set her free. Her other loves are her husband and son (she is now an empty nester). Susan enjoys reading, photography, spending time with family and friends and writing. She has a heart for prayer ministry and loves her church!

http://aken53.wordpress.com
http://susanakeninspiringphotos.wordpress.com/
http://www.lulu.com/spotlight/susanaken