November Newsletter – Giving Thanks

Yesterday was Thanksgiving here in the United States and I would like to take this time to express my thanks to you, my wonderful readers. I am so grateful for your continued interest and support, for your kind comments on social media, and thoughtful personal e-mails. Your words, whether they are few or many, have brought more joy than you may realize. This holiday season, I encourage each of you to continue to spread messages of hope wherever you can. Write an encouraging note to a friend (perhaps even through snail mail), call a family member who you aren’t able to speak to very often, or maybe even send an anonymous gift asking nothing in return. The media is quick to focus on the anger and division in our world, but it is gratitude, kindness, and faith that unifies us. As always I continue to pray for each of you.

Latest News

Broken Lines Book Tour

The Broken Lines Virtual Book Tour was the first tour I’ve run and I’m pleased to say it was a great success. It’s always exciting (and a little nerve-wracking) to hear what readers think, and I was pleased to read all the wonderful reviews combined with so many lovely photographs. All the reviewers really made the cover of Broken Lines shine with autumn colors! If you missed any stops on the tour, it’s not too late. Giveaways have ended, but you can still check out the reviews and author interviews. Don’t forget, there are still two stops remaining!

If you’re on Facebook or Goodreads, next month I will be doing a takeover on the American Historical Novels group. Each day from December 13-18, I will be posting some special behind the scenes tidbits related to Broken Lines. As newsletter subscribers, some of the details you will have heard, but others are new. I will also be hosting a paperback giveaway with every comment another chance to win. 

And last, but never least, progress continues to go well for Unsettled Shores. I have taken my first pass at editing the first half and plan to finish drafting the rest by the end of December. Fingers crossed that I can get a draft to my beta readers by March 1!

Recommended Reads

Book cover for Some Through the Fire by Jennifer Q. HuntSome Through the Fire by Jennifer Q. Hunt

Being a writer of World War 1 fiction, I’m always interested to read a book during this time period, especially when it’s written by a fellow indie author. Some Through the Fire is far more than a standard Great War story though. Jennifer Q. Hunt manages to pack a lot into only 274 pages taking us from 1917 to 1920 in wonderful fashion. We follow our main character, Violet, over these years as she comes to terms with her family’s life being upended again and again and wondering if there will ever truly be a time of peace or a future with the husband she longs for.

The story begins with the Atlanta Fire of 1917, a historical event I had never heard of and found very interesting to learn about, especially after reading Jocelyn Green’s Veiled in Smoke earlier this year which focused on the Chicago Fire of 1871. Some Through the Fire takes the reader through the devastation of that event then quickly transitions into the horrors of the first world war, showing detail from the trenches to the home front while incorporating a wealth of research without feeling like an information dump. Next we experience the devastation of the Spanish Influenza followed by a quick romp through the early jazz age and a look at the Boston police strike of 1919, another event of which I was not aware. Given the current events of our world, I found the influenza and police strike riots to be timely, thought-provoking and well-written.

Although the book is ultimately focused on Violet’s journey, Jennifer Hunt makes us deeply invested in the side characters’ stories as well. Each one seemed completely relatable, even when I hadn’t experienced exactly what the character was going through. I think we can all relate to the concepts of loss, grief, physical pain, as much as joy, excitement, and love. At its heart, this is very much a Christian-centered novel where the characters are unashamed to discuss their beliefs, or lack thereof. There is even one atheist character who constantly challenges Violet’s firm Christian convictions, ultimately making her even stronger in her faith. I also loved that the author was able to incorporate humor throughout such an otherwise dismal time in these characters’ lives with many witty lines including one continuing joke about a pair of foo cats found in their uncle’s library. Watching these characters grow (either in good or bad ways) kept me flipping all 274 pages in a single weekend.

Also, this month only, Jennifer Q. Hunt is providing an opportunity to win one e-book and one paperback copy of Some Through the Fire. To enter, simply complete the entry form at the link below by December 18. Full giveaway rules are listed on the giveaway page.

Enter the “some through the fire” Giveaway Here

For more information on Jennifer Q. Hunt’s books, visit: http://www.jenniferqhunt.com

 

Second Chances by Valerie Howard

Second Chances continues Valerie Howard’s inspirational style of immersive characters and relatable family situations. Even though I read a beta reader version (aka: not completely polished), I still loved this story from beginning to end. The story follows Kate Wilson, a mom who according to her blog, has a picture perfect life when in reality she is barely managing to tread waters. Even though she’s lost her kids’ respect and her husband’s love, she continues to believe that she can somehow blog her way to a happy ending. It’s a familiar story in today’s world when many people choose to share a fake internet life with their 500 “friends” than risk vulnerability with a few loyal ones. As Second Chances demonstrates though, vulnerability is the only true way to develop real relationships, ones that depend on face-to-face communications and no technology to succeed. As a mother and wife, I think this story would be relatable to any parent who has ever felt less than,  wondered if they could ever measure up to the world’s expectations, and perhaps most importantly doubted if their past could ever make them worthy of God’s love. It’s a powerful story of redemption, faith, and family and one that I highly recommend.

Second Chances is the fifth book in Valerie Howard’s New England Inspirations series, but only the second of hers that I have read, with the first being Saving Faith. Although these books are part of a series, each contains unique characters and can be read on its own.

Also, this month only we have two giveaway opportunities! Valerie Howard is also providing an opportunity to win one e-book copy of Second Chances. To enter, simply complete the entry form at the link below by December 18. Full giveaway rules are listed on the giveaway page.

Enter the “Second Chances” Giveaway Here

For more information on Valerie Howard’s books, visit: https://valeriehowardbooks.wordpress.com

Disclaimer: I did receive a free copy of Second Chances from the author; however, a positive review was not solicited or required. All opinions expressed are my own. 

Share the Book Love

Read it? Loved it? Tell others by writing a review!

Need a copy of any of the books? All three can be read on their own or in order of publication. Click the photo below to grab your copy!

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The best way to receive this newsletter is through e-mail. If you were directed to this site via social media or a search engine, you can subscribe to updates by entering your e-mail on the Contact page. E-mail addresses are never sold or distributed. You may unsubscribe at any time.

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October Newsletter – Book Tour Countdown

Tomorrow is Halloween which means a few things in our house: only one more day until sugar-induced craziness and several pounds of excess candy sent off to deployed American military and first responders. If you weren’t aware that this service is available, several organizations like Operation Gratitude, Operation Shoebox, and Soldiers’ Angels have drop-off locations across the country or check with your local law enforcement, fire station, or dentist. My family loves it because it’s an easy way to give back to the community and support our troops. Plus, last year we donated over seven pounds, which is seven pounds of sugar I was happy to say goodbye to.

Also, I know many of you may be nervous about trick-or-treating due to COVID. You need to do what’s best for your family, whether that means going out or staying home. My children will be wearing masks and distancing exactly as they would do at school, and as always I continue to pray that whatever festivities you partake in find you safe and healthy.

Latest News

Broken Lines Book TourWe’re only a few days away from the virtual book tour for Broken Lines. I am so blessed to have 22 amazing authors, bloggers, and bookstagrammers participating and am looking forward to hearing their reviews on my latest novels. Make sure to follow their pages to keep up with each day of the tour including additional author interviews, book features, and chances to win an e-book copy of Broken Lines.  A full list of tour stops is included below. Instagram or Blog are linked; however, many tour stops will also participate on Facebook and/or Twitter. 

Amanda M. Barrat

Amanda Tero

Another Open Book

The Book Distiller

Books and Tea with Me

Cart Full of Books

The Clean Read Book Club

Danielle’s Writing Spot

Diana Brandmeyer

Hasty Book List

Heather Manning

Jennifer Q. Hunt

Jenny Knipfer

Joy Within Pages

Leslie L. McKee

Living the Cozy Life

Living That Bookish Life

Marisa Joy

My Glitterary Retreat

Northern Reading

Sassy Bookish Mama

Splashes of Joy

In other news, the first draft of Unsettled Shores is now about 50% complete, which keeps me on schedule for completion by the end of 2020. Stay tuned!

Recommended Reads

This month’s reads included two wonderful historicals linked by a common theme: The Paper Girl of Paris by Jordyn Taylor and All That Was by Tanya E. Williams.

IMG_2851The Paper Girl of Paris by Jordyn Taylor

I love historical fiction, but it’s especially enjoyable to read when it reflects a little known mystery of the past. The Paper Girl of Paris is exactly that. Although the Jordyn Taylor doesn’t include historical notes in her book, the minute I read this book’s blurb, I knew it was based on the true story of Marthe de Florian’s Paris apartment, locked up and unchanged since the Nazi occupation in 1942.

This emotional dual timeline novel switches between Alice in the present and Adalyn in the early 1940’s, telling an engrossing tale of Nazi-occupied Paris and the resistance efforts performed at the time. The story is both tragic and hopeful, switching between moments of victory sliding into moments of despair. Each woman had distinct characteristics and was strong in her own way, but had times of emotional vulnerability too. I did find it interesting how, even though Alice’s grandmother left her the apartment, her role was relatively minor in the overall WW2 story. Where she did play a major role was in highlighting how grief takes its toll on people in different ways. In particular, the author did a great job showing how that grief can cause someone with chronic depression to tailspin. She approached the topic in a kind way and showed that there isn’t one correct way to help our loved ones with mental illness, but that we shouldn’t be afraid to try.

For more information on Jordyn Taylor’s books, visit: https://www.jordynhtaylor.com/

BookBrushImage489All That Was by Tanya E. Williams

Tanya E. Williams’s latest novel, All That Was, released October 20, and I was thrilled to once again beta read for this fantastic author. This novel which I’m dubbing contemporary women’s literature with a historical flair, involves two women, one who can’t confront her ghosts in the present and an actual ghost who can’t let go of the past. Through an old church and a box of diaries, the two women discover all they are through all that was.

What I loved about this book, other than everything, was that it provides a realistic yet hopeful look at the all consuming power of grief. Emily, a lawyer in the present, believes by stifling the pain of her past, she’s moving forward, when in reality she is doing anything but. By comparison, Elizabet, after spending her entire life consumed by grief over her husband’s untimely passing, is now a ghost and refuses to “move on” due to her fear of possibly spending eternity without him. They are both stuck in place and although they do not realize it, have become comfortable in their idleness. Moving forward is frightening, so it is better not to move at all. Through a wonderful cast of supporting characters, All That Was shows the importance of grieving as a community, of having the courage to share our pain with others, and having compassion for those who are still in the midst of their grief journey. Although the two women are unable to physically speak to one another, they must work together to overcome their grief and finally allow themselves to truly live.

Also, this month only, Tanya E. Williams is providing an opportunity to win one e-book copy of All That Was. To enter, simply complete the entry form at the link below by November 20. Full giveaway rules are listed on the giveaway page.

Enter the “All That Was” Giveaway Here

For more information on Tanya E. Williams’s books, visit: https://tanyaewilliams.com

Disclaimer: I did receive a free copy of All That Was from the author; however, a positive review was not solicited or required. All opinions expressed are my own. The giveaway copy will be provided directly from Tanya E. Williams.

Share the Book Love

Read it? Loved it? Tell others by writing a review!

Need a copy of any of the books? All three can be read on their own or in order of publication. Click the photo below to grab your copy!

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The best way to receive this newsletter is through e-mail. If you were directed to this site via social media or a search engine, you can subscribe to updates by entering your e-mail on the Contact page. E-mail addresses are never sold or distributed. You may unsubscribe at any time.

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Two on Tuesday with Jennifer Lynn Cary

This week’s guest for the Two on Tuesday author spotlight is Christian historical romance author, Jennifer Lynn Cary. With a tagline of “writing stories the heart remembers,” her novels include stories from 18th century Versailles to biblically inspired stories of the 1960’s. The third book in The Relentless Series, Relentless Joy (inspired by the story of Rahab) releases October 15th.

Jennifer’s Two on Tuesday Facts:

  1. I started out writing historical novels because I learned about my great, great, great grandfather’s great, great. great grandfather in a history book. At the Alamo. Yeah, I’m related to Davy Crockett–5 generations from me to him. If you go back five more generations, you find the very first Crockett of our lineage who was hand-picked to serve as second-in-command of the palace guards at Versailles by Louis XIV himself. The story became the basis for my first series, The Crockett Chronicles, and although I don’t know for sure that the king played matchmaker to my two main characters, he really was known for doing that, so I thought it made a great story and a wonderful idea for a series.
  2. But then my cousin said that I should write a story about my parents’ restaurant back in the 1950’s-60’s. Small town, sweet romance. Still historical. I couldn’t get past the idea and had to start writing–Tales of the Hob Nob Annex Cafe. (See newspaper clipping below.) And now I’ve found my niche writing in the twentieth century. The music and times call to me. So many stories and so much bravery and heart. Hope you will join me on a more recent historical trip with my newest stories in The Relentless Series.

Hob Nob Annex Grand Opening Ad from Tribune 001

Jennifer is available to connect with readers on Facebook, Instagram, and Goodreads. More information on her books and much more can be found at her website: https://www.jenniferlynncary.com

Calling all authors!

Are you an an author interested in being featured on Two on Tuesday? If so, please complete the form here.

Disclaimer: Authors featured within the Two on Tuesday Author Spotlight were not compensated in any way for their participation. Content included within each author’s current or future works or the legitimacy of any information provided within this spotlight are not the responsibility of Kelsey Gietl. Authors were provided book content guidelines prior to applying. Authors should be contacted directly with any questions.

September Newsletter – Two Giveaways!

It’s officially fall (or autumn depending on which you prefer) here in Missouri which means the days are getting cooler, unfortunately also shorter, and the leaves are starting to show their lovely colors. I know some of you have already experienced snow, others are still seeing hot temperatures, and those on the west coast of the U.S.A. and Canada are just trying to brave through another round of forest fires and smoke clouds. Whatever you are living through right now, know that as always my prayers are with you for a safe and healthy month ahead.

Latest News

It’s crazy to think that it’s already been almost a month since the e-book release of my World War I novel, Broken Lines.  I would like to thank each and every one of you who pre-ordered and purchased. If you would be willing to write a review, I would be extremely appreciative. With a wealth of books on the market, reviews are so important to an author in finding the right readers and ensuring that readers find books they’ll enjoy. Even one or two lines makes a big difference!

In other news, I have been diligently working on Unsettled Shores, having completed about 30% of the first draft. My hope is to complete the first draft by the end of December, push out to beta readers around March and be able to publish some time in the fall of 2021. This schedule is tentative and I will provide updates to the timeline as they are available. This book is proving to be my favorite yet with several exciting new characters, multiple settings, a double romance, and even more intrigue, so stay tuned!

Also, if you missed last month’s newsletter, to celebrate the launch of Broken Lines, I am giving away five e-book copies and one signed paperback copy. To enter, simply complete the entry form at the link below by September 28.  Full giveaway rules are listed on the giveaway page. 
BL Giveaway

Enter the “Broken Lines” Giveaway Here

Recommended Reads

IMG_2871

Susie Murphy’s A Matter of Class Irish historical saga series is a fantastic example of why a reader shouldn’t discount an author based on one book alone. When A Class Apart released in 2018, I had been following Susie Murphy for a few months online and decided to pick it up. Although the middle was a little slow, I loved learning about the Irish setting and the characters were well-rounded and immersive. The two main characters, Bridget and Cormac, come from opposite sides of the class divide: he a stable hand and she the lady of the estate where he’s employed. I was rooting for them from the minute Bridget told us how they met as children in the orchard and carved their names in a tree. And then it ended on a cliffhanger …

Wanting to know what happened to the characters, I picked up A Class Entwined and it was five times better than the first one. If you haven’t read the first book and don’t want spoilers, stop reading now. ……… After being torn apart, Bridget is trapped in a loveless marriage and Cormac has been banished from the estate, forced to participate in unspeakable means in order to keep himself out of poverty. Book two was so much grittier, the emotions more raw, and the characters gained a new depth we don’t see in the first one. They’ve seen how harsh life can be and are muddling through it, never expecting to find happiness or each other again. Despite the more somber nature of this novel, it does have a happy ending (and a few twists I wasn’t expecting) and will suck you back in for book three.

By the time A Class Forsaken released, I ordered it right away, finished it in only a few days, and wished I didn’t have to wait so long for the next one. A Class Forsaken takes us farther into the background of both Bridget and Cormac’s families and provides a stronger look at some of the Irish politics that were occurring between the lower class and the aristocracy during that time. Susie Murphy immerses the reader in vivid descriptions of the streets of Dublin, the Irish countryside, and one particularly tragic house fire where I could feel the heat on my face. I loved the hopeful ending and am very excited for book four. There will be six books in all. Normally, I’m not a fan of starting a series when there’s a long stretch of time before it will be finished, but trust me, this series is well worth reading as they’re released.

Also, this month only, Susie Murphy is providing an opportunity to win one paperback copy of the winner’s choice. To enter, simply complete the entry form at the link below by October 28.  Full giveaway rules are listed on the giveaway page.

Enter the “A Matter of Class” Giveaway Here

Content note: This series does contain profanity, brief open door sex scenes, and some violent episodes. I personally felt these were not excessive, tastefully done, and made sense within the context of the story. Each reader has a different level of acceptable content, however, and must decide for themselves.

Books reviewed above were not provided by the author and a positive review was not solicited or required. All opinions expressed are my own. The giveaway copy will be provided directly from Susie Murphy.

Upcoming Events

Broken Lines is going on virtual book tour! During the month of November, various book bloggers and bookstagrammers will be posting their photos and reviews of Broken Lines. Some will also be including author interviews and giveaways. A full list of tour stops is included below with links. Instagram or Blog are linked; however, many tour stops will also participate on Facebook and/or Twitter.

Amanda M. Barrat

Another Open Book

The Book Distiller

Books and Tea with Me

Cart Full of Books

The Clean Read Book Club

Danielle’s Writing Spot

Diana Brandmeyer

Hasty Book List

Heather Manning

Jennifer Q. Hunt

Joy Within Pages

Leslie L. McKee

Live the Cozy Life

Living That Bookish Life

Marisa Joy

My Glitterary Retreat

Northern Reading

Sassy Bookish Mama

Splashes of Joy

Share the Book Love

Read it? Loved it? Tell others by writing a review!

Need a copy of any of the books? All three can be read on their own or in order of publication. Click the photo below to grab your copy!

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The best way to receive this newsletter is through e-mail. If you were directed to this site via social media or a search engine, you can subscribe to updates by entering your e-mail on the Contact page. E-mail addresses are never sold or distributed. You may unsubscribe at any time.

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COPYRIGHT © KELSEY GIETL 2020

August Newsletter – Broken Lines Available in e-book !

Well, readers, we find ourselves at the end of August. For many of you that means back to school time and this year certainly looks different than most school years, doesn’t it? Whether your children are going back into the classroom, following a hybrid model, or going completely virtual, I pray that your school year will be full of learning, fun, and as stress-free as it possibly can be. And as always, I pray that August found you healthy and safe and the coming months will be kind (and hopefully cooler!).

Latest News

BL 1 Day

It’s hard to believe that the e-book release of my World War I novel, Broken Lines, is tomorrow! It has been a long road full of twists and turns and delays due to the pandemic. Hours upon hours were spent researching military tactics, historical timelines, state statutes, and many other nuances. I now know more about 1917 morality law than I ever thought I would and discovered that The Great War was as fascinating as the second world war, yet doesn’t receive the credit its due. I am thrilled with the final product and so excited to make it available on all major e-book platforms worldwide. Thank you to everyone for your patience and continued support during the delayed release and a special thank you to those who pre-ordered the e-book or purchased in paperback. My fingers are itching to finish the next book, Unsettled Shores, and will be sharing the official back cover blurb in the coming months.

Need to purchase a copy of Broken Lines? Click here to order.

In addition, since I am unable to host a book launch in person this year, I’m instead holding a book launch giveaway and you, my newsletter subscribers, are the first to know. I am giving away five e-book copies and one signed paperback copy of Broken Lines. To enter, simply complete the entry form at the link below.

BL Giveaway

Enter the Giveaway Here

Winners will be selected at random and announced on September 29, 2020. Each winner qualifies for only one free book. No purchase necessary. A purchase does not increase chances of winning. Due to shipping fees, paperback entries are limited to U.S.A. residents only. Entrant understands that an e-mail address will be required to enter and used to automatically subscribe to future newsletters from kelseygietl.com. Information collected will only be used for purposes of this giveaway and to subscribe entrant to the newsletter for kelseygietl.com. Information collected will not be sold or distributed. Entrant may unsubscribe from newsletters at any time. For questions surrounding this giveaway, please visit the contact page.

Recommended Reads

This month, I had the opportunity of another beta read: Second Chances by Valerie Howard, releasing later this fall. This contemporary Christian read was an emotional story about a mother coming to terms with how childhood hurts have caused a rift in her own family. She spends her time creating the ideal online presence, posting photographs and stories that appear perfect, but all the while struggles to wade through the daily chaos. Meanwhile, her own daughter has started high school and immediately fallen into the wrong crowd. While both of them search for love and meaning in what seems like a loveless world, they discover that their second chance could come from the most unexpected place of all. I will post more about this one on social media when information becomes available.

117155970_3961747870519223_1158410370581772505_oIn the meantime, I would also recommend checking out Valerie Howard’s book, Saving Faith, about a small-town woman who takes a publicist job for a man she can’t stand in order to stop his business from buying and destroying her parents’ church. She expects to tear him down brick by brick, but what she didn’t expect was for him to finally tear down the walls around her heart.

dfw-sm-acf-cover-midAnd finally, I wanted to give a quick shout out to author, Susie Murphy for her novel A Class Forsaken, the third book in her A Class Apart series. It released this past Monday, August 24, and I haven’t had a chance to read it yet, but the first two books were fantastic reads. Check out my September newsletter for a full review of this Irish saga series.

Share the Book Love

Read it? Loved it? Tell others by writing a review!

Need a copy of any of the books? All three can be read on their own or in order of publication. Click the photo below to grab your copy!

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The best way to receive this newsletter is through e-mail. If you were directed to this site via social media or a search engine, you can subscribe to updates by entering your e-mail on the Contact page. E-mail addresses are never sold or distributed. You may unsubscribe at any time.

Follow me on:

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COPYRIGHT © KELSEY GIETL 2020