Ella’s Promise Cover Reveal

The third book in the Great War Great Love series, Ella’s Promise, will be released on November 1, 2019.

Synopsis: When she joins the war effort during the Great War, American nurse Ella Neumann doesn’t see allies or enemies. The daughter of German immigrants, all she sees are human beings in need of care. A promise to herself and a promise made to her by an enemy officer become the catalyst for the life she plans to lead after the war. But a handsome Canadian soldier may complicate her plans. In this third installment of the Great War – Great Love series, join Ella in a tale of promises, betrayal and unconditional love.

front cover

Advertisements

The Lion’s Heart Only .99 on Kindle #Sale

This month’s Book Blast for the Catholic Writers Guild is The Lion’s Heart! For a limited time only, the ebook is available for .99 and the print book for 9.99.

The Lion’s Heart by Dena Hunt encompasses the beautiful teachings of the Catholic Church on same-sex relationships.  It won the 2016 Catholic Arts and Letter Award for Adult Fiction.
Front Cover Final revisedsm

Synopsis:
Paul Meyer has never let anyone get too close. Until Max. The Lion’s Heart is a heart-rending story about love and sacrifice. The emotional struggle of Paul’s same-sex attraction, the guilt he feels, and his ambivalence toward his Catholic faith all come together in this look inside the heart of a tortured man.

Excerpt
It wasn’t the deception, unpleasant as it was, that troubled him. In fact, he simply couldn’t put his finger on it. All he knew that was truly different with Max was that he loved him. And it was that, that single stark truth, which made everything different. He never loved before… He put the empty wine glass on the balcony floor beside him and tried to find again that mysterious, interior quiet that city noise always brought him. But he felt instead a kind of disquiet that seemed urgent… Love was never wrong. He’d heard that so often from sincere people, good people… ‘Love is never wrong.’ More than a platitude, it became a mantra. No one could argue with it, not without being judgmental or bigoted. Paul himself always believed it, although he never thought much about it before—never had much reason to think about it. But then, he’d never really loved anyone before…

Reviews 
“Dena Hunt is a consummate storyteller who does not shirk or shy away from the difficult questions about life and love that her story raises. The Lion’s Heart contains not only the loves of lovers, spouses, parents, and children but also the demons and dragons that selfishness unleashes. The Lion’s Heart is not for the faint-hearted, nor is it for the hard-hearted. It pulsates with a passion that will bring true hearts to their knees.” Joseph Pearce, author of The Unmasking of Oscar Wilde, co-editor of the St. Austin Review

“It may be fiction but The Lion’s Heart reflects a truth that is as real as the sunrise. The moral conflicts and dilemmas are treated with dignity and there are no easy answers, though, thank God, there are answers. The style, beauty, and flow of Dena’s writing speaks for itself. I could not give this book a higher rating, for it is at the top of the charts. I thank Ms. Hunt for having the courage and the beauty of heart to see, feel, and love as she did – for this book is, above all, a work of love. May it be accepted as such.” A.K. Frailey, author The Deliverance Trilogy

“Dena Hunt conveys some of the very real struggles of those persons who have same-sex attractions (SSA), especially the shame, confusion, and misery that can accompany such feelings. She shows how that suffering can affect family and friends. The path to understanding homosexuality requires abundant patience, prudence, and good will because the topic is not primarily a controversial cultural issue, but rather a complex personal reality. It is one for which there is not one simple or general explanation – or response. This novel gives us a glimpse into the lives and hearts of those touched by SSA who are striving to understand themselves, and so to love genuinely after the example of Jesus Christ and the teachings of His Church.” Rev. Paul Check, Executive Director, Courage

“Whatever side of controversy you call home, this book is a game-changer. With The Lion’s Heart, Dena Hunt gives us a compassionate story courageously told, depicting the truth in all its dimensions. Readers will never be the same, and with The Lion’s Heart, the landscape of faith-based fiction is changed forever.” Erin McCole Cupp, author, Don’t You Forget About Me

“The Lion’s Heart is a rocketing page-turner that had me hooked from beginning to end. The characters’ very genuine experiences with same-sex attraction, and its consequences, led me to a much deeper understanding and empathy for all those who must bear this burden. Above all, this story powerfully brings to life the reality that love often means saying “no” to one’s own desires, and instead choosing what is truly good for the other.” Christopher Blunt, author of Passport

You can purchase The Lion’s Heart on Kindle at this link.

It’s also available in paperback at this link.

Royalties from this book are donated by the author to Courage International.

Charlotte’s Honor and In Name Only Soon to Be Published in Portuguese!

Charlotte’s Honor (Great War Great Love #2) and In Name Only (O’Donovan #1) have recently been translated into Portuguese.  Both books will be available soon as an ebook and by mid-August for print.

Charlotte's Honor Front PortugueseCharlotte’s Honor was translated into Portuguese by Juliana Lira, who translated Julia’s Gifts into Portuguese as well.  Special thanks to Juliana!

Front Cover INO Portuguese

In Name Only was translated into Portuguese by Aliene B., and she will also be translating A Subtle Grace into Portuguese!  According to Aliene, she “loved the first book!” and is looking forward to translating the second O’Donovan Family book.

Motherhood Matters #Kindle #Sale

For a limited time only, Motherhood Matters (second edition) by Dorothy Pilarski is available on Kindle for only 2.99!

PilarskiCover_Sm

Synopsis: Motherhood Matters is even more than what its subtitle says: “Inspirational Stories, Letters, Quotes & Prayers for Catholic Moms.” Author Dorothy Pilarski offers Catholic mothers encouragement and support to follow their precious vocation. Her refreshing affirmation about the beauty, power, and importance of motherhood is much needed today. The author seems to know from personal experience how to directly address a Catholic mom’s doubts and insecurity. Living in a society that often dismisses, denigrates, or ridicules both motherhood and Catholic values means that often a Catholic mom is on the front lines of evangelization—of her own family, and of society. In a very grounded way, Pilarski expresses the dignity of the mother’s calling, and offers creative responses to the challenges. In style, Pilarski is informal and unpretentious. Each chapter is an interesting mix of stories, essays, prayers, and tips. The tips are particularly original and practical, ranging from “how to raise your kids Catholic,” to “ways to make an active attempt to grow closer to God.” The prayers and poems are beautiful and from the heart, but my favorite part is the selection of quotes about motherhood and living a spiritual life that Pilarski scatters throughout each chapter.

My review:  This beautiful book contains reflections of a mother for mothers. 21st century mothering has become one where mothers are expected to work a double, sometimes triple shift: in the workplace,  still carrying most of the load of housework while often caring for their own parents or in laws.  In a culture that has run amuck, Motherhood Matters is a healthy reminder that motherhood is a vocation, a call from God.  It is a sacred gift – one that unfortunately many women have been forced into treating it like just a role or a series of tasks. For some unfortunately it’s treated like an afterthought.  Pilarski illustrates through these writings that truly ‘Motherhood Matters.’

Highly recommend!  Click here to purchase the Kindle edition.

Other reviews:

“This is an excellent source of home-spun wisdom for mothers, their daughters and all women of faith. Dorothy has a great style that is folksy but at the same time she delivers solid truth with passion and humour.” 

~ Sister Ann Shields, S.G.L., of Renewal Ministries is radio host of Food for the Journey and author of Deeper Conversions, To Be Like Jesus and other books on Catholic Spirituality.

“In grammar school, when I learned that Esau had sold his birthright for a mess of pottage, I thought he was very silly. How could an intelligent person give up a precious gift for a passing gratification? Dorothy Pilarski’s book is a must read for women who have become ‘female Esaus.’ Satan’s greatest victory since original sin is to have convinced women that their ‘knighthood’ is a prison. This book offers a precious counter poison to that.”

~ Dr. Alice von Hildebrand, Catholic philosopher and theologian, and author of The Privilege of Being a Woman 

“This thought-provoking book is jam-packed with inspiration, hope and practical tools that will comfort and inspire women of every age.”

~ Colleen Hammond, TV talk-show host, radio personality and best selling author of Dressing With Dignity and The Gossip Guide

“This is a passionate and compelling book. Dorothy has lovingly woven together a collection of articles, letters, quotes and prayers that are guaranteed to stir a Catholic mother’s heart.”

~ Donna-Marie Cooper O’Boyle, host of EWTN’s Everyday Blessings for Catholic Moms and best-selling author of Catholic Prayer Book for Mothers.

“This is a terrific compilation of writings about the triumphs and tragedies of being a mother in today’s world. Dorothy provides concrete suggestions and inspirational vignettes that will encourage any woman in her mothering journey.”

~ Lisa M. Hendey, author of The Handbook for Catholic Moms and A Book of Saints for Catholic Moms 

“Dorothy Pilarski writes with profundity and wit about matters practical and divine. Full of anecdotes and humor, this book makes us take an honest look at the lives of women today and helps us to focus on what matters most.”

~ Elena Maria Vidal, author of Trianon

“The author mines personal epiphanies to extract practical nuggets of gold relevant to all Catholic mothers. They’ll want to attach the essay ‘Raising Catholic Kids’ to the refrigerator door!”

~ Josephine Nobisso, speaker, writing consultant and author of more than 40 books, including three novels and several children’s books 

“Dorothy Pilarski is a voice in the wilderness. Full of courage, wit and grace, her candid book is a sincere invitation to discover, or perhaps re-discover, the rich universal treasures of the one Holy Catholic and Apostolic faith.”

~Sharon DiCecco, host on HMWN Radio Maria 

 

Open Book – July #openbook

An Open Book 800W

I’m joining with Carolyn Astfalk and CatholicMom.com for Open Book.  Here’s what I’ve been reading for the past month (heavy on non-fiction this month):

Kizan

Warrior of the Kizan by Ann Margaret Lewis

Amazon Synopsis: Star Wars meets Edgar Rice Burroughs’ A Princess of Mars in this techno-magic tale of war and redemption!

Dakhar Talin, a member of a cursed, telepathic people, is the new head of security for the Royal House of Emun. When the princess, Tasia, is kidnapped, Dakhar’s investigation leads him to a sinister planet called Earth.

But inner demons from his military service torment him, threatening his sanity, integrity, and the success of his mission. Can he bring the princess home before he loses his soul to ever-corrupting madness?

My review:  I’m still in the process of reading this. I was fortunate to be able to read a few versions of this book while it was still a work in progress.  Ann Margaret Lewis’ writing flows beautifully and her characters are well-defined.  Full review to come.

Infiltration

Infiltration: The Plot to Destroy the Church from Within

by Taylor Marshall

Amazon Synopsis: It took nearly two millennia for the enemies of the Catholic Church to realize they could not successfully attack the Church from the outside. Indeed, countless nemeses from Nero to Napoleon succeeded only in creating sympathy and martyrs for our Catholic Faith.

That all changed in the mid-19th century, when clandestine societies populated by Modernists and Marxists hatched a plan to subvert the Catholic Church from within. Their goal: to change Her doctrine, Her liturgy, and Her mission.

In this captivating and carefully documented book, Dr. Taylor Marshall pulls back the curtain on their nefarious plan, showing how these enemies of Christ strategically infiltrated the seminaries, then the priesthood, then the episcopacy, and eventually the cardinal-electors all with the eventual goal of electing one of their own as pope.

You’ll come to see that the seemingly endless scandals plaguing the Church are not the result, as so many think, of cultural changes, or of Vatican II, but rather the natural consequences of an orchestrated demonic plot to destroy the Church.

My review: This was a compelling read. Marshall sets the foundation for his thesis well by starting the story in the 19th century.  Some of what he sets forth, however, is speculation. Much of it is based on hard evidence. And we have seen and are witnessing the culmination of the “infiltration” happening today. Highly recommend. Five out of five.

Inheritance

Inheritance by Dani Shapiro

Amazon Synopsis: What makes us who we are? What combination of memory, history, biology, experience, and that ineffable thing called the soul defines us?

In the spring of 2016, through a genealogy website to which she had whimsically submitted her DNA for analysis, Dani Shapiro received the stunning news that her father was not her biological father. She woke up one morning and her entire history–the life she had lived–crumbled beneath her.

Inheritance is a book about secrets–secrets within families, kept out of shame or self-protectiveness; secrets we keep from one another in the name of love. It is the story of a woman’s urgent quest to unlock the story of her own identity, a story that has been scrupulously hidden from her for more than fifty years, years she had spent writing brilliantly, and compulsively, on themes of identity and family history. It is a book about the extraordinary moment we live in–a moment in which science and technology have outpaced not only medical ethics but also the capacities of the human heart to contend with the consequences of what we discover.

My review: This is was an extremely well-written book that read almost like a novel.  With my fascination in genealogy and ancestry, I found this to be a compelling story and I enjoyed reading about the author’s journey.  In her specific case, she didn’t look Jewish and didn’t look like anyone else in her family.  Had I been her, that would’ve been my first clue.  But it it made me think: what would I do if I found out I was not who I thought I was all along?  Five out of five.

Patty Duke

In the Presence of Greatest: My Sixty-Year Journey as an Actress

by Patty Duke and William Jankowski

Amazon Synopsis: The Miracle Worker. The Patty Duke Show. Valley of the Dolls. Those perennial film and television titles still reverberate with audiences entranced with Academy Award-winning film actress and Broadway and television icon Patty Duke.

Patty first gained national attention and praise playing Helen Keller in both the Broadway stage and film versions of The Miracle Worker. As identical cousins on The Patty Duke Show, her name became an American household word. Her later work in Valley of the Dolls, Me, Natalie, My Sweet Charlie, a later television remake of The Miracle Worker, and dozens of other productions established her as one of America’s leading actresses.

Illustrated with over 70 rare photos from both Patty Duke’s career and personal life, many never before published and from her personal collection.

My review:  This really isn’t a book, per se.  It is a transcription of conversations between Patty Duke and William Jankowski.  There were too many typos for a professionally published book and sometimes I had to read a sentence over again to figure out what she was trying to say.  As well, I don’t think Patty/Anna would’ve liked the title In the Presence of Greatness, which is a bit over-the-top. All that being said, however, I knew what I was getting when I purchased this book.  I’ve read her other books and now that she has passed, I was interested in reading this one.  Enjoyable read and great photos. Three out of five.