Fiction Faith & Foodies

Fiction Faith & Foodies: July 2013

Monday, July 29, 2013

Lynn Chandler-Willis shares Chocolate Raspberry Dessert and The Rising

Chocolate Raspberry Dessert
Chocolate Raspberry Dessert
Submitted by Lynn Chandler-Willis

1 cup all-purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 stick (½ cup) butter or margarine, softened
¼ tsp baking powder
4 eggs
1 ½ cups (16oz can) Hersey's Syrup            
Raspberry Cream Center (recipe follows)
Chocolate Glaze (recipe follows)

1) Heat oven to 350F. Grease 13x9x2 inch baking pan

2) Combine flour, sugar, butter, baking powder and eggs in large bowl; beat until smooth. Add syrup; blend thoroughly. Pour batter into prepared pan.

3) Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool completely on wire rack. Spread Raspberry Cream Center on cake. Cover and refrigerate. Pour Chocolate Glaze over chilled dessert. Cover and refrigerate at least one hour before serving.

Raspberry Cream Center: Combine 2 cups powdered sugar, ½ cup (1 stick) softened butter or margarine, ¼ cup raspberry preserves, and 1 tsp. Water in small bowl. Beat until smooth.

Chocolate Glaze: Melt 6tbs, butter or margarine and 1 cup Hershey's Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips in small saucepan over very low heat. Remove from heat; stir until smooth. Cool slightly.

Mmmm. This sounds and looks yummy! Thanks for sharing the recipe, Lynn. Now how about telling us a little about your latest Pelican Book Group release, The Rising?
The Rising
Purchase Link

A little boy, beaten and left to die in an alley. A cop with a personal life out of control. When their worlds collide, God intervenes. Detective Ellie Saunders's homicide investigation takes a dramatic turn when a young victim "wakes up" in the morgue. The child has no memory prior to his "rising" except walking with his father along a shiny road. Ellie likes dealing with facts. She'd rather leave all the God-talk to her father, a retired minister, and to her partner, Jesse, a former vice cop with an annoying habit of inserting himself into her life. But will the facts she follows puts Ellie's life in mortal danger? And will she finally allow God into her heart forever?


“Jack told me you were at lunch. Caper’s is one of my favorites, so I thought I’d take a chance.” He winked at her then sidled closer. “Anyway, I was thinking about your dead kid—“

“He’s not dead.”

A waitress slammed a sandwich down in front of Ellie, and Jesse helped himself to a homemade chip.

“OK, so he’s not dead. You have sent his picture to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children?”

She huffed. “Did Jack send you?”

“No, Jack didn’t send me. I was just thinking if the center didn’t get a hit, I’ve got a few connections with the FBI, and they’ve got some really cool equipment.”

Ellie pulled a piece of bacon from her sandwich and chewed on one end. “Thanks, but no thanks. I really don’t want the Feds involved.”

Jesse snatched another chip and shook his head. “No black suit with shades is going to swoop in and take your case, Detective Saunders.” He grinned and helped himself to another chip. “I thought we could get them to run his picture through the facial recognition scanner. Maybe we’ll get a hit.”

What was with all the we stuff? The case was complicated enough. The last thing she needed was Jesse involved. She didn’t need a constant reminder of her downward spiral.

Sound great? Yeah, I think so, too. You can scoop it up and read the rest by purchasing The Rising here

Meet Lynn Chandler-Willis

Lynn Chandler-Willis has worked in the corporate world (hated it!), the television news business (fun job) and the newspaper industry (not a fan of the word "apparently" and phrase "according to"). She keeps coming back to fiction because she likes making stuff up and you just can't do that in the newspaper or television news business.

She was born, raised, and continues to live in the heart of North Carolina within walking distance to her kids and their spouses and her nine grandchildren. She shares her home, and heart, with Sam the cocker spaniel.

She is the author of the best-selling true crime book, Unholy Covenant. The Rising is her debut novel.

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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Have you read YOU CAN'T HIDE by Wendy Davy?

You Can't Hide
About the book~
Cara Dalton lives a normal, routine life until her first daring adventure lands her in imminent danger. Mistaken as a witness to a brutal crime, she becomes the target of a ruthless drug smuggler who is willing to stop at nothing to silence her. Now, she must place her safety in the hands of a wounded stranger. Undercover agent Gage McKenna knows all too well the dangers Cara is up against. Recovering from a life altering injury—inflicted by the same man who now hunts Cara—Gage faces an uncertain future of his own. As Gage and Cara team up to fight this highly motivated killer, they must learn to rely on each other or risk losing it all.

My summary~
After a ruthless drug smuggler inflicts horrendous damage to Undercover DEA Agent Gage McKenna's leg, Gage retreats to a remote barrier reef island off the North Carolina coast to heal and lick his wounds. Weary of her boring life, Librarian Cara Dalton does something unusual and spontaneously follows her brother, Jonas, to Columbia. Seeking an adventure, she stumbles onto a chance encounter with Mercado, a drug dealer. The last thing she expects is to be hauled off to a remote coast guard station to be held under lock and key by Jonas's surly friend, Gage. 

What I liked...
Most of the setting took place on a former coast guard station on the island. The author really made the setting come alive for me. I could almost feel the salt air kissing my cheeks and the sand tickling my bare feet.

The characters were so life-like and relatable. Surly and grumpy at first because of the pain, Sage was also gentle and caring. 
Direct and straight-forward, Cara says it like she sees it, and because of that, I found their dialog refreshing.

After his career-altering injury, Gage's faith flounders. Where was God when Mercado bashed Gage's leg? Cara doesn't put up with his self-pity. Her sweet comments and gentle touches remind Gage he's still a man, regardless of his injury, and that God never left him.

Loved the perfect ending, but you won't get any spoilers from me!

Something to note...
At 175 pages, some readers may prefer beefier books, but You Can't Hide's concise, keep-me-glued-to-the-pages plot blended with a natural, complete romance, was the perfect size for me.

You Can't Hide
is another nail biter from Wendy Davy, and in several key spots, my palms were sweating and my tummy clenching. I knew what was coming (no surprise there), but I didn't know how it was going to play out. It's the perfect size to finish in an afternoon, but really a fantastic read for anytime!

Purchase Link

Disclaimer: Sending a big thank you to Wendy Davy for providing me with a review copy of You Can't Hide. The opinions expressed in this review are my own, and I received no monetary compensation.

Have you read You Can't Hide? 
Do you agree with my review? What were your thoughts?

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Friday, July 5, 2013

Have you read THURSDAY'S CHILD by Clare Revell?

Thursday's Child
Purchase Link

About the book~

Broken...with bits missing. That's how Niamh, senior prosecutor for the CPS, feels when she wakes in hospital severely injured with no knowledge what happened--for the past eight years. A tall man in a firefighters uniform claims he's her husband. While he's everything she's ever dreamed of in a man and more, she doesn't know him. And if he was so important why can't she remember? Was there something so terrible, so painful in her marriage, her mind has suppressed it?

First on the scene at a horrific accident, Jared Harkin is devastated to find his wife one of the injured. He's already lost a child, can he live through this? Niamh survives the crash, but awakens with eight years missing and no memories of their life together. Determined to help her remember the past and their love, he sets about wooing her all over again. But are some things best forgotten?

As Niamh struggles to remember, the investigation into the accident reveals foul play. Did her recent caseload have anything to do with the attempt on her life? Or was it someone closer to her? As bit and pieces of memory return, the attacker strikes again. Can she piece together the whole of her past before it's too late?

Sharing my review~
As a successful prosecutor, Niamh Harkin (pronounced Neeve) has received her share of death threats, but this particular case has her stressed and on edge. While driving home during a raging storm, Niamh's car flips. Jared, her husband and firefighter, responds to the accident, not knowing she's involved. When Niamh wakes, she's lost all memory of the last eight years, including being married, and doesn't recognize her husband. 

What I really liked...

When post-crash Niamh discovers how she was before the crash, she doesn't like her. I'm glad the author only showed us the new Niamh, rather than the old, because I wouldn't have liked her either. 

Jared loved Niamh, for better or worse (and their marriage had taken a turn for the worse over the last couple of years), yet he was determined to make the best of their marriage, even when she'd given up on them. This was a true love story, from beginning to end, and Jared never gives up hope that she'll finally love him again. He figures that Niamh's memory loss is a great chance for them to start over and determines to win her heart all over again.

I especially liked how the author weaved in tidbits from Niamh's boss, Alan. His wife suffers from dementia, but he'd never dream of taking his wedding ring off just because she doesn't remember him. Niamh, who'd tucked her wedding band around her neck, can't help but ponder her commitment. Loved the analogy!

And the ending? Oh, so sweet! But, I promise not to give away any spoilers. 

What I didn't like so much...
The opening courtroom scene started a bit slow for me, and I felt Niamh's reaction upon waking in the hospital a bit awkward, but don't give up! Once I moved past that, it flew. I also stumbled occasionally over certain UK fire terminology, but only because I'm married to a US fire professional. :-)

This story reminded me of a modern day A Christmas Carol, except the events don't take place in a dream. While I felt Thursday's Child was a mite weak on the suspense (I surely didn't mind!) and heavier on the romance, both sets of readers will enjoy the plot and savor the love story! Whether you're lazing on the beach or hanging out at home, it's a perfect read for summer.

What about you? Do you ever wish you had "do overs" in life?

Disclosure: Sending a big thank you to the author for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my fair and unbiased review. The opinions expressed are my own, and I received no compensation for my review.

Clare Revell
Clare lives in a small town in England with her husband, whom she married in 1992, and her three children. Writing from an early childhood and encouraged by her teachers, she graduated from rewriting fairy stories through fanfiction to using her own original characters and enjoys writing an eclectic mix of romance, crime fiction and children's stories. When she's not writing, reading, sewing or keeping house or doing the many piles of laundry her children manage to make, she's working part time in the breakfast club at one of the local schools.

She has been a Christian for more than half her life. She goes to Carey Baptist where she is one of three registrars.

She can be found at:

From Sea to Shining Sea: 
Men in Uniform 4th of July Contest
Heroes come in all shapes and sizes. From soldiers to sailors to firefighters and police officers. From pastors to teachers to fathers.Thursday’s Child releases July 5th from Pelican Book Group. To celebrate this, Clare will be giving away two print copies and two e-book copies. To enter leave a comment here. All names will go in a hat and the winners drawn randomly on July 12th.
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