SQT – Mini Review Edition

seven-quick-takes-friday-2-1024x727Please join me and other Catholic bloggers at This Ain’t the Lyceum for Seven Quick Takes Friday. I’m using this opportunity to catch up on a bunch of reviews.

1. Opal’s Jubilee (mini-review)
Opal’s Jubilee by Leslie Lynch Opal McBride has paid her debt to society, but it’s only when detective Josh Boone untangles the secrets of her past that justice can be truly served. Beautifully written, this is my favorite book of the series. Lynch is not an author to shy away from difficult issues. In this one, the topic of domestic violence is tackled. Highly recommend!

2. Hush, Hush (mini-review)
Hush, Hush by Michelle Quigley I enjoyed the author’s debut novel, set in Northern Ireland at the beginning of WW II. Molly is normal sixteen-year-old. One night, she is brutally assaulted. What follows is a heart-wrenching journey through anger and denial as the young girl suffers in secret and silence. Molly initially tells her family only that she is pregnant but not about the assault. Sensitively told, this is a compelling story that illustrates the preciousness of every human being as an unrepeatable gift (with a nice plot twist at the end).

3. Georgios (mini-review)
Georgios by A.K. Frailey Interesting, factual, well-researched, A.K. Frailey’s Georgios is a must read for historical fiction fans. The novel takes place in the year 100 AD and our young protagonist has been “destined for greatness” by his family. The Greek boy later discovers that his lineage isn’t what he thought it was. In the end, this unique coming of age story is an inspiring tale for young and old.

4. The Grace of Yes (mini-review)
The Grace of Yes by Lisa Hendey The Grace of Yes is a moving, inspiring, challenging and entertaining look at the virtues. I was especially touched by the personal experiences Hendey shares. The book is beautifully written in conversational tone and is one that can be read and reread over and over. While I loved the author’s other books, this one has become my favorite. Highly recommend.

5. Watershed (mini-review)
Watershed by Neil Hamilton Today and tomorrow this book is still FREE on Kindle. Watershed is a compelling international mystery novel set against the backdrop of the “looming water shortage in the American Southwest.” Hamilton, who is a retired member of the RCAF, uses his military background to create a realistic political mystery that takes place mostly in the USA and Canada. For me, as a resident of the Ottawa Valley, I particularly enjoyed the scenes describing downtown Ottawa and the surrounding area.The writing is solid. There are many characters to keep track of, but the development and dialogue are well done, especially with the main characters. There are, however, numerous swear words and mature situations, so the book would not be appropriate for children and those sensitive to language.

6. Eve’s Apple (mini-review)
Eve’s Apple by Marie Therese Kceif Like many other teens, Marie was rebellious. That rebellion continued into young adulthood and a career in aviation. Abuse, bankruptcy and divorce led her back to God. Eve’s Apple is a witness to how “God gently guides one of His Eves into a slow freeing surrender of a Mary’s trusting yes.” Compelling true story.

7. Backup Cartoon (because I always include a cartoon!)
My children are mostly grown up now, but some days I still feel like I need “backup!”

Copyright James and Ellen Hrkach...please do NOT use without permission

Copyright James and Ellen Hrkach…please do NOT use without permission

Cartoon copyright James and Ellen Hrkach, please do not use without permission

#LTO: Don’t You Forget About Me Only .99!!

DYFAM advert For a limited time only, Erin McCole Cupp’s “Don’t You Forget About Me” (Kindle edition) is on sale for only .99 until Friday! (USA customers only – sorry!!)

Synopsis:
Mary Catherine Whelihan made it out of Walkerville alive once before. Can she pull it off this time? Bullies, sexual harassment, finding a corpse in the local creek… Cate’s childhood in 1980s Walkerville was murder! So what could possibly tempt her to return? A cryptic email from Eugene Marcasian, MD, her grade school crush might do the trick. Can Cate and Gene find the cause of the mysterious illness afflicting nearly all of the girls in their graduating class, including Cate herself? Or will corporate bullies continue to take down anyone who gets in their way? More importantly, can Cate stay alive long enough to get one more slice of tomato pie?

Check out the YouTube Book Trailer here:

Excerpt:
“Doesn’t signing in at the Technology Annex check-in desk blow the whole cloak-and-dagger bit?”
Gene furrowed his brow for a moment. “I’m not looking for cloak-and-dagger. I just want to buy enough time to get some answers and put a stop to whatever is making people sick. But Mary Catherine—I don’t know what kind of wasp nest we might be kicking at here.”
“Nice image.” My stomach knotted.
Gene gently but firmly grasped me by my upper arms. “I’m not kidding. If what our coffee shop friend said is true…”
I picked up where he trailed off, “Then Walkerville wasps carry some pretty wicked stingers.”
Gene nodded. “I’m willing to give it all to find the truth. I’m not sure I want you to.”
He was right. This wasn’t picking up rocks in Quaker Creek and looking for water pennies. This was digging up what two potentially deadly forces—Big Pharma and The Mob—wanted kept buried.
I forced myself to look directly into his eyes. “Search softly,” I said, “and poke with a big stick.”

Praise for Don’t You Forget About Me:
“This book has all the elements that make a book addictive: a compelling story told well with characters who are unforgettable. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, you’ll stay up all night reading.”
Sarah Reinhard, author, SnoringScholar.com and A Catholic Mother’s Companion to Pregnancy

“This captivating murder mystery made me laugh, cry, and crave Italian food; ‘80s pop tunes are still stuck in my head. If you like mysteries that offer a good mix of suspense and science, don’t miss this book.”
Barb Szyszkiewicz, franciscanmom.com

“Don’t You Forget About Me…is a rollicking fun and exciting cozy murder mystery. The author’s strong and clever command of the written language makes this book an entertaining page-turner. I recommend this highly-enjoyable, cozy, clean, lively mystery to all readers!”
Therese Heckenkamp, award-winning author, Frozen Footprints

“A quirky, fun, mystery-romance that will tickle your funny bone while making your hair stand on end.”
AnnMarie Creedon, best-selling author, Angela’s Song

About Erin:
Erin McCole Cupp is a wife, mom, and lay Dominican who lives with her family of vertebrates in the middle of Nowhere, Pennsylvania. Her writing has appeared in Canticle Magazine, Parents, The Catholic Standard and Times, and The Philadelphia City Paper, and she is a regular contributor to CatholicMom.com. Her other professional experiences include acting, costuming, youth ministry, international scholar advising, and waiting tables. Her influences include Neal Stephenson, Gerard Manley Hopkins, and Jane Austen. Her weaknesses include iceberg lettuce, frozen drinks, and anything labeled “Visitor Center.” Erin is the author of Jane_E, Friendless Orphan: A Memoir (Broken Wheel Media, 2006), Don’t You Forget About Me (Full Quiver Publishing, 2013), and Working Mother (Full Quiver Publishing, 2014), all available on Amazon. You can find more about Erin at erinmccolecupp.com.

To buy Don’t You Forget About Me (Kindle Edition) for only .99, click here. (USA customers only)

SQT – Radio Interview and More Free Books

seven-quick-takes-friday-2-1024x727Please join me and other Catholic bloggers at This Ain’t the Lyceum for Seven Quick Takes Friday.

1. The Seeking Heart with Allison Gingras
I’ll be on A Seeking Heart with Allison Gingras today at 10 a.m. To call in and ask questions and just join in the conversation, call 1-855-949-1380.Seeking Heart

2. Catholic Writers Guild
I’m also over at the Catholic Writers Guild talking about “Mediocrity.” Check out the post here.

3. Stealing Jenny #1 in Canada!
This past week, Stealing Jenny hit #1 in Christian Fiction and Religious Fiction on Amazon.ca! What is so cool is that it was ahead of the Chronicles of Narnia (#2) and the new novel by Karen Kingsbury (#3)Stealing Jenny #1 Narnia 2 and Kingsbury 3.

4. Stealing Jenny Giveaway
Allison Gingras is hosting a giveaway this week. Head on over to Facebook to enter the giveaway of three print copies and two Kindle copies of Stealing Jenny.

5. Pray for Middle Eastern Christians
This wonderful post lists “7 Powerful Ways to Pray for Christians Suffering in the Middle East.”

6. Reading/Review Shelf
Memoirs of an Infantry Officer

7. Dust Bunnies Cartoon

Image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach. Please do not use without permission.

Image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach. Please do not use without permission.

#VBT – Eve’s Apple by Marie Therese Kceif

EvesAppleEve’s Apple by Marie Therese Kceif
Short synopsis: A Witness of God’s Faithfulness: Marie struggles to grow in grace and guidance from the Lord while slowly recognizing her own rebellion. She intimately shows us the highs of her aviation, military and automotive careers and the suffering lows of abuse, bankruptcy, and divorce. Her relationship with God grows through it all. Eve’s Apple is a witness of how God gently guides one of His Eves into a slow freeing surrender of a Mary’s trusting yes. This is a journey of hope, faith, and real relationship!

Available on Amazon in softcover and hardback:
http://www.amazon.com/Eves-Apple-Marie-Therese-Kceif/dp/1462410219

Also available at the Publisher’s Website:
http://bookstore.inspiringvoices.com/Products/SKU-000693538/Eves-Apple.aspx

Goodreads Giveaway: (drawing to occur April 26)
https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/132147-eve-s-apple

Author’s Biography:
From farm life in Wisconsin, Marie Therese Kceif went on to have a varied full life. She holds a Bachelors of Science in Mathematics. Marie became an active duty US Army Capt. and pilot, automotive manager, bible study leader, RCIA guide, lector, speaker, writer, mom and wife. She now lives with her husband in Fenton, Michigan.
You can contact Marie Therese at marietheresekceif@gmail.com

Reviews for Eve’s Apple:
Joseph A. Marsigla, COL, MS, Commander, US Army: “Some words that come to mind are warm, introspective, wonderment, I could go on and on. The talent God has given her has allowed me to look at my life, to look at things I have not thought of in some time. I see many parallels and similar struggles. This book is one of those rare jewels that can change lives.”

Father David Harvey, Senior Catholic Priest: “An able storyteller and an adept communicator. She speaks with conviction and grace.”

Jill Savage, Hearts at Home founder and CEO: “She has a story to tell, and she tells it well. She’s honest and open about the less-than-charming part of her story. Most important, however, she is candid and sincere about the work God has done in her life. Our moms were touched by her story, and I know you will be, too.”

Other stops on the Virtual Book Tour:
April 9 – Karee Santos (Can We Cana)
April 13 – Ellen @ Plot Line and Sinker
April 14 – Michael Seagriff (Harvesting the Fruits of Contemplation)
April 15 – Alexandrina Brant
April 16 – Karee Santos (Can We Cana) Review
April 17 – Jean Heimann (Catholic Fire)
April 18 – A.K. Frailey
April 19 – Melanie Juneau (The Joy of Nine)
April 20 – Nancy Ward (Joy Alive.net)
April 21 – Dana Doyle (Catholic Working Mom)
April 21 – Catholic Mom
April 22 – Ellen @ Plot Line and Sinker (Interview)

Want to win a #FREE E-Book of Eve’s Apple? The first person who leaves a comments wins the free e-Book!!

SQT – White Easter and Cool Technology

seven-quick-takes-friday-2-1024x727Please join me and other Catholic bloggers for Seven Quick Takes Friday at This Ain’t the Lyceum.

1. White Easter
It’s not the first time and certainly won’t be the last time we’ve had a White Easter. And it certainly made all things look “like new.” Very appropriate for Easter!

image copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach

image copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach

2. 21st Century Technology
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, I do love 21st century technology. A few days ago, a N.J. religious education director asked us to give a Sexuality and Natural Family Planning talk for their Pre-Cana course (they couldn’t find a live replacement for the original couple doing the presentation). So tomorrow morning, we’ll be giving the talk via Skype.

And…next Thursday evening, I’ll be speaking via FaceTime to a book club who is reading my first book, Emily’s Hope.

3. Virtual Book Tour for Marie Therese Kceif
Yesterday was the first stop on the VBT for Marie Therese Kceif, author of Eve’s Apple. Karee interviews Marie, who is a former military pilot.EvesApple

4. Full Quiver Publishing You Tube Channel
We’re in the process of creating a Full Quiver Publishing YouTube Channel, where we’ve been uploading radio and TV interviews as well as book trailers! Check it out and let us know what you think! Full Quiver logo

5. Divine Mercy Novena
We’re nearly at the end of this beautiful novena, but you can always catch up here.

6. Review Shelf
Hush Hush by Michelle Quigley

7. Less Cost Cartoon

Image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach. Please do NOT use without permission.

Image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach. Please do NOT use without permission.

Copyright 2015 Ellen Gable Hrkach

7QT – Book on #Sale, Lent Movies & Other Cool Things!

seven-quick-takes-friday-2-1024x727Please join me and other Catholic bloggers at This Ain’t the Lyceum for 7 Quick Takes Friday!

1. Angela’s Song Only .99!!
Angela’s Song by AnnMarie Creedon is only .99 until tomorrow! Head on over to Amazon to pick up your Kindle copy for only .99!AS Front Cover Final9-19

2. Catholic Writers Guild
I’m over at the Catholic Writers Guild blog today speaking about the importance of being needed.

3. Ecce Ancilla Domini
My post in honor of the Feast of the Annunciation two days ago and on the importance of saying yes to God’s will sparked a lot of comments.

Image copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach Please do not use without permission

Image copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach Please do not use without permission

4. Do You Believe
Have you seen the new faith-based movie, Do You Believe, yet? It’s from the same producers and writers of “God’s Not Dead.” I thoroughly enjoyed it. Do You Believe

5. The Passion of the Christ
Our family watches this movie every year, on Good Friday, when we return home from the Good Friday service. Powerful, hard-to-watch movie.Passion

6. Reading Shelf
A Catholic Gardener’s Spiritual Almanac by Margaret Rose Realy.

7. Kidding Cartoon

image copyright 2011 James & Ellen Hrkach Please do not use without permission

image copyright 2011 James & Ellen Hrkach Please do not use without permission

Copyright 2015 Ellen Gable Hrkach

7QT – Enter to Win FREE Books!

seven-quick-takes-friday-2-1024x727Please join me and other Catholic bloggers at This Ain’t the Lyceum for 7QT Friday.

I’ve got several free books to give away!!! (North American readers only, please!)

1. A Subtle Grace Giveaway
It’s the one-year anniversary of A Subtle Grace’s release. I’m giving away one free print copy as well as one free Kindle copy. Please leave a comment below before Friday, March 20th and I’ll enter you to win one of the free books. (If you’ve never commented on my blog before, I will have to approve your comment. Be patient! I’ll be traveling this weekend with little access to internet. I will approve comments on Sunday!)A Subtle Grace front cover Nov2013

2. From the Hub to the Heart Giveaway
Leave a comment (before March 20th, 2015) to win a free print copy of this wonderful book by Andrew LaVallee and Leticia Velasquez!! It’s an ideal book for Lenten reading that encourages fasting.Kindle small

3. Catholic Conference 4 Moms Video PackageCC4MomsAd
Conference Package is $39.99. Enter code word Hook to get $10 off and purchase the package for $29.99 (which includes all kinds of bonuses!!)

4. Dynamic Women of Faith Conference
I’ll be traveling today to Toronto to speak at this conference tomorrow. I’ll also be selling and signing copies of all my books!
DWF2015PNG

5. Milan, Italy
Eight years ago this week, James and I were on a whirlwind tour of England, France and Italy (My husband and I, along with another teacher and his wife, were chaperones for 48 high school students). Memorable trip! The photo below is of us in front of Santa Maria delle Grazie where we were able to see Leonardo’s Last Supper, which was one of the highlights of our trip! (We almost didn’t get inside because we didn’t purchase our tickets in advance…the other chaperone begged and pleaded and we were finally allowed to purchase tickets!!)

photo copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach Please do not use without permission

photo copyright Ellen Gable Hrkach Please do not use without permission

6. Reading Shelf
Pope Francis, Life and Revolution

7. Less Cost Cartoon

Image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach. Please do NOT use without permission.

Image copyright James and Ellen Hrkach. Please do NOT use without permission.

Copyright 2015 Ellen Gable Hrkach