Renee’s Inspirational Moments Blog Review

Review and Giveaway: Teresa Lilly’s An Unchained Love

An Unchained Love


The Book:

When Texas Hill Country Ranch Owner, Dustin, stops at a farm house to get his horse shod, the last thing he expects to find is a young woman chained in the kitchen, forced to cook for her uncle. And when he offers to hire her as a cook, and take her home with him, Dustin doesn’t realize that the young woman will not only fill his stomach but will soon fill his heart as well. Can Charlie escape the chains of her past and find love with Dustin?


The Review:

Dustin isn’t trying to save the world. He’s trying to get home. On the way, he discovers a ragged, wild woman chained to a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere. When she feeds him and shods his horse, he’s determined to take her away from her prison, but her uncle holds the key to her freedom.

Deprivation’s the only life she’s ever known. As the news of her father’s death takes away the need for the shackle around her ankle, the arrival of a stranger offers a shred of hope. Her uncle grants permission for her to leave, and her life changes forever. Can she find a new beginning or will her past haunt her forever?

A story of finding love, faith, and grace among the thorns of life, An Unchained Love offers hope to the hopeless when none can be found. The well-structured plot makes for a pleasant read with its faith-centered, but not preachy message scattered through the pages. The only drawback? Lack of depth in the characters and setting.

So, if you aren’t looking for “deep POV”, this one’s for you. Don’t worry, it’s still a good book, story lovers. I give it four stars, primarily for that reason. It was a very good story.


 

God is Love Blog Interview

Teresa Ives Lilly, author, is visiting my blog today to talk about her life story and passion for writing inspirational books.

Here’s what’s in it for you: Teresa Ives Lilly will give away two .pdf copies of her book Lucky in Shamrock Texas!

The book giveaway contest starts today, March 1 and will end on Sunday, March 15.

Contest rules: To enter the contest, leave a comment after reading this author interview. You must include your e-mail address in the comment section below so Teresa can contact you if you win and send the .pdf of her book. The two winners will be chosen by Alexis via an old-fashioned drawing. The winners will be notified on Monday, March 16 and should receive their book by March 17 which is appropriate as it is St. Patrick’s Day! :)

Read on for the author interview (questions by Alexis in bold, answers from Teresa not in bold)…

~*~
Alexis: Why do you write Christian Romance?

Teresa: Many years ago I used to read regular Regency Romance, but then I discovered Christian Romance and fell in love. I knew from the first time I read one that I wanted to write Christian romance.

Do you prefer writing novellas or novels? Explain.

Novellas. I’m not sure why, but God has just blessed me to write shorter stories.

How many books have you written and published?

Thirteen between novels and novellas.

Who is your publisher? Do you have an agent?

I am an Indie publisher known as Lovely Romance Press.

You are the Editor of Lovely Christian Romance magazine and publishing company. What a wonderful initiative! Tell me how that happened.

Well, several years ago I began the magazine and several writers showed real talent and didn’t know how to get published so I worked with them on it. However, this last year I closed both to focus on my own writing and work with ACFW group on editing.

When you were a child, did you think you’d be a writer when you “grew up”? Did you imagine you’d be doing what you’re doing now? Why or why not?

Yes, I wanted to be a writer since I was six. As for how I knew…In school we had to write a poem. I wrote one and when I got home I read it to my mother. She told me it was wonderful and that someday I might be a writer. It’s one of the few times she ever verbally encouraged me and the dream was born that day. Since then I have written for magazines, contests, children’s books and finally settled into my true love of Christian Romance Novellas.

What’s your writing routine?

I do almost all my writing between 9 p.m. and midnight. I work on the publishing end during the day.

Describe your writing space. What makes it unique?

I have a desk in my extra bedroom, and a television which I basically keep old television shows like The Beverly Hill Billies etc. running while I write.

What books are you reading now?

I just finished several Mail Order Bride novellas published by Love Inspired Historical.

Which one of your novellas that you’ve written so far is your favorite? Why?

Christmas Village Miracle because I based it on the Christmas Village I set up every year, and always wish I could just live in.

If you were not a writer, what would you be doing career-wise?

Well, I was a certified teacher for a while then a mom, then a home school mom, then I ran a children’s resale shop for seven years. Now I am strictly focusing on my writing and I help my husband with paper work for his business.

Give my readers a glimpse into your personal life. Are you married with children? What is your favorite hobby? How you spend your free time?

I have been married for 28 years. We became Christians right before our wedding and have been serving Christ ever since. I have three children ages 27, 26, 23 and now a grandson who is 1 years old. Writing is my hobby…but I love to go to garage sales as well.

Complete this sentence: When my readers reach “the end” of my books, I hope______________because___________________________.

Teresa: When my readers reach “the end” of my books, I hope they want to read others by me because they enjoyed it so much.

Thanks for the author interview, Teresa!

~*~
Author bio:

Teresa Ives Lilly is an inspirational writer. She mainly writes novellas, but has a few novels and a few children’s chapter books in publication.

All her work is available at Amazon.com, BN.com, Smashwords.com.

She had had a variety of articles published in magazines, several items published in anthologies, has written over 200 unit studies for homeschoolers and public schools.

Teresa lives in Texas. She would love to hear from you. Contact her through e-mail, teresaiveslilly@yahoo.com

~*~
Connect with Teresa:
Author page on Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/teresalillyauthor

Christmas Returns

Christmas Return coverChristmas Returns

When Dale returns to Bandera, Texas for Christmas, all he expects is to spend time with his beloved Dog Buck. However, running into Shanna, his high school sweetheart, reminds him of the time he has wasted and all he lost by running away on Christmas Eve nine years earlier.
When he discovers that something awful happened to Shanna on the night that he left, Dale is determined to make it up to her, but first He must be able to forgive the way that God has forgiven.

Purchase Here

Review by Red Rabbit


This is a story that covers so many emotions, anger, betrayal, pain, suffering, heartache, love loss and love found. Dale left Bandera, Texas nine years ago on Christmas Eve and has only come back now when his family let’s him know his childhood dog, Buck, is dying. What a shock to run into his childhood best friend and sweetheart, Shanna. Nine years of no communication and there are painful secrets that will be brought to light. An eight year old boy, Jesse is an innocent victim as a result of rape. Shanna must face her nightmares and attacker before she can completely heal. Forgiveness is the only way to ever really get over the pain. Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.

Reviews at Crossreads

Reviews At Crossreads for Sheriff Bride and Orphan Train Bride

Very excited to have two reviews written byKathy Heare Watts appear on Crossreads.   I found Kathy at a facebook page called Christian Reviewers…and she reviewed my books in exchange for free copies…but was also free to review as she saw fit.   I’m glad to say she liked my books.

 

 

CrossReaders Book Review: Sheriff Bride by Teresa Lilly

 

Title: Sheriff Bride

Author: Teresa Lilly

Rating: 5 stars

About the Book

This is the first of 4 books

When four sisters show up in town to fill the position of Sheriff, Mark isn’t sure what to do. This town is no place for women, especially a green eyed beauty like Sam. When the town learns that these four woman can outshoot any man around Mark is forced to accept the girls as sheriff, but when one of them is kidnapped and being forced into marriage, will the other girls be able to save her and prove once and for all that they can do the job. Mark and Sam break down the wall of stubbornness, and realize that love has found them?

If you enjoy this read the next books in the series, Jo’s story, Dan’s Story, Rob’s story and Sheriff Bride Christmas the Inside Man and Mammie’s Mail Order Bride that takes place in Waterhole Texas.

Review

GOD DOESN’T MAKE MISTAKES, WE DO

What a delightful story of four brave woman, sisters, who have never been treated well by their father during their entire life. How dare they be girls, so even though their late mother was allowed to give them feminine names, they were called Sam, Jo, Dan and Rob. What a shock to the town of Waterhole, who had hired John Hardin to be their new sheriff, and in his place, four young women show up with the news that John was dead and they were there to fill the job of Sheriffs. Mark Carlin, the banker and man who hired Hardin, sure is not happy. But don’t stand in the way of a determined woman, much less four of them. The storyline and dialogue is entertaining and these feisty and definitely talented ladies, prove in several cases, they are definitely the persons for the job of Sheriff. Not only can they out gun, but their love of God shines through and harden men find Christ as their Savior. I love the quote, “If God has forgiven you, you have to forgive yourself too.” Waterhole, Texas will never been the same with the Hardin Sisters as the newest Sheriffs and town residents. Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own. (Very minor editing issues, but not enough to ruin the story)

This review was submitted by: Kathy Heare Watts

The Cowboys Christmas Snow Angel

Cowboy Christmas Snow AngelThe Cowboy’s Christmas Snow Angel

When Shera Logan stepped off the train to stetch her legs, she never expected to twist her ankle and be
Abandoned at a coal stop, sixty miles from the next town. After walking for hours, she realizes that she can go no further, so she lays down in the snow, makes a snow angel and her most special prayer asking God to either send someone to help her or to take her home.

Mathew Tucker intent on returning to his ranch after a visit to town never expected to find a woman collapsed in the snow almost frozen to death.

Will Shera’s prayers be answered by this cowboy who tries to save her or will she become a real angel….

Purchase Here

A charming story with answered prayers. Mathew Tucker was heroic, finding a frozen Shera Logan while returning home from town after visiting his parents. He tends to her for days on end while she recovers from nearly freezing to death and from a badly sprained ankle. The story and dialogue is heartwarming as Mathew proves he is a perfect gentleman and Shera learns that not all men are evil. What a sweet concept that “When you make a Snow Angel, God looks down from heaven and hears your most special prayer.” It took a rogue, one out-of-town train trip, a mishap, and God’s guidance to bring two special people together. All in God’s timing. Disclosure:

Interview

Interview

Image4This interview was posted at More Than A Review

Teresa Ives Lilly is the author of Gambled Away Sheriff BrideLucky in Shamrock Texas, and quite a few more Christian romance novellas and novels.

More Than a Review had a chance to ask Teresa a few questions.

MTAR: Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?

Teresa Ives Lilly: I am 50 years old, have been writing seriously for several years now  although I loved writing my whole life.  I am married, have three grown children and own a children’s resale story in San Antonio.

MTAR: What do you do when you are not writing?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
Run a children’s resale store.  I actually only get to write between 9 pm and Midnight

MTAR:  What inspired you to write your first book?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
I discovered Janette Oke.   I loved her stories and that inspired my first book  Mamma’s Bells.  However, I prefer to write short Novella’s like Christmas Village Miracle  and Lucky in Shamrock Texas.

MTAR: How did you choose the genre you write in?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
Christian romance is what I like to write because it’s what I like to read.

MTAR: Which book do you recommend for a reader that is new to your writing?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
The first story in the Sheriff Bride Series   just called  Sheriff Bride

MTAR: What books/authors have influenced your writing?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
Jenette Oke and Grace Livingston Hill.

MTAR: What was your favorite chapter (or scene) to write and why?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
I just love the opening scene in my book Gambled Away, when the young man gladly loses his step sister in a poker game, but the winner thinks he has won a mule.

MTAR: Are there certain characters you would like to go back to, or is there a theme or idea you’d love to work with?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
Now that the 4 books in the Sheriff bride series are done,  I would like to go back and write a Christmas story with them all.

MTAR: What has been the toughest criticism given to you as an author?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
I had an acquisitions editor give me two pages of critique on the newest story I am working on,  “Orphan Train Bride”  but I was pleased to get so much information.  Some of the items she mentioned would change the whole theme though, so I am working through them and choosing those that help me without changing the integrity of my book.

MTAR: Is there anything that you would like to say to your readers and fans?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
Please consider leaving positive feedback anywhere you can for books.   A lot of times, only those who are unhappy with a book will leave comments.

MTAR: What books have most influenced your life most?
Teresa Ives Lilly: The Bible first, but then the Love Comes Softly series by Janette Oke.   They were the first christian books I ever read.  I loved them so much I stole the whole set from my church……ooops  I was a baby Christian myself then.

MTAR: What book are you reading now?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
I’m sort of trying to expand my horizon because I usually just reread Grace Livingston Hills 100 books every year, but I’m trying to find some others that I like.

MTAR: Do you see writing as a career?
Teresa Ives Lilly:   No– a dream come true.   I also sell unit studies for teachers and that actually pays my bills, but my book writing is my real love.

MTAR: What was the hardest part of writing your books?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
Rewriting, rewriting, rewriting  and then still finding a few mistakes.

MTAR: What is your favorite theme/genre to write?
Teresa Ives Lilly:
I love to write Christian Romance, but I dabble in Children’s Chapter books as well.

An Unchained Love

Unchained loveAN UNCHAINED LOVE

When Texas Hill Country Ranch Owner, Dustin, stops at a farm house to get his horse shoed, the last thing he expects to find is a young woman chained in the kitchen, forced to cook for her uncle. And when he offers to hire her as a cook, and take her home with him, Dustin doesn’t realize that the young woman will not fill his stomach but will soon fill his heart as well. But will Charlie be able to escape her past?

Purchase Here

 

Review by Liz

Absolutely loved it. This is my first book to read by Teresa Lilly , and it want be my last. I had no problems following the story. When I started , I did not want to put it down. This is one of those books that you can’t wait to see what the next page will bring. Dustin is a young Texas Hill country ranch owner. He was headed home and his horse threw a shoe. He came upon a cabin and was hoping someone could help him with getting another shoe on his horse. He was not expecting to see what he saw when he went into the cabin. A young wild looking woman chained up in the kitchen and being forced to cook for her uncle. He could not believe what he was seeing. This is not right Lord. What was he to do ? He needed to get her , Charlie, out of the cabin. He was a single man. This is a very sweet and clean romance and I loved it. I want tell any more spoilers, but get your copy and find out more about Charlie and Dustin.

Mammie’s Mail Order Bride

Mammie's Mail Order Bride lovely1Mammie’s Mail Order Bride

When Mammie announced that Stephen needs to go to town and pick up his mail order bride, he is flabbergasted. Mammie has been writing to Sally Jersey and expects him to marry her.
Stephen has every intention of putting her back on the stage and sending her home, until he see’s her lovely face and the four nieces and nephews she had to bring along.
Will Stephen allow himself to fall in love or will Sally be given away to the most eligible bachelor in Waterhole, Texas.

Purchase Here

Review by Mary M. Ball

Loved the book!

Stephen Calloway is tough on the outside and knows what he wants and it certainly isn’t the mail order bride that his grandmother Mamie arranged for him. Begrudgingly, he travels to town to meet the woman conned into coming to Waterhole Texas and send her on her way, until he finds her with four kids and no home to go back too.
His strong sense of right and wrong won’t let him abandon her so he let’s her work on his ranch with his grandmother, determined to find her a husband.
As the struggle to find her a husband continues, he grows closer to her and the children. It takes a threat on her life for him to understand that the Lord works in mysterious ways.
Mammie’s mail order Bride is a delightful story of despair, hope and love. I highly recommend this book.

Orphan Train Belle

Orphan Train Bride - By ChristmasORPHAN TRAIN BELLE

Purchase Here

Maribelle is asked to leave the orphanage at age eighteen, she isn’t sure where to go or what to do, so she jumps at the chance to ride the Orphan Train and help take care of the twenty-four children.

At the final stop in Missouri, she is once again concerned about her future return to Boston, but when a handsome man asks if he can ‘adopt’ her to help take care of ‘Connie’, she immediately agrees.

Will Maribelle, ‘Belle’ find a home and love in Missouri or have to return to the orphan life in Boston.

Review by Juanita T

Good to see that love is when you least expect it. Good Belle found someone to love her.That it is out there just open up your heart.
Juanita T

Review by Red Rabbit

What an enjoyable short story of hope, love and happiness. Maribelle was forced to leave the orphanage because she turned eighteen. She is picked to assist with twenty-four adoptable children traveling westward on the orphan train, but at the end, she would be returned to Boston and the unknown. The town blacksmith, Dan, shows up and the last child has already been adopted, but he talks Maribelle into coming home with him, even asking if he needed to adopt her to care for Connie. The story is simplistic and comical in the assumptions that Belle makes about the relationship between Dan and Connie. Dan thanks the Lord for sending Belle and Belle thanks the Lord for not having to return to Boston. The misunderstanding is resolved and ends with a HEA ending. It’s a reminder to not assume about a situation and to remember that God is always in control. Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.


 

 

 

Orphan Train Bride

Orphan Train Bride

ORPHAN TRAIN BRIDE

When Kelli heads west on the orphan train as a helper, she expects to return to the orphanage and live her life there as an old maid, but once she sees the town of Emporia, she desires to stay.
After overhearing a cowboy telling the general store owner that he is looking for a mail order bride, Kelli rushes forward to offer herself.

Will Carter accept her as his wife? Will he adopt the small boy who is left over on the train? and what is the underlying reason that Carter wants a wife? Is it for love?

and when a natural catastrophe takes place, will Kelli and Carter’s rocky relationship be able to endure?

Purchase Here

Review

It has been the most unusual and exciting day of her life, and Kelli couldn’t help feeling a warmth spread through her soul.
      “Thank you, Lord,” Kelli whispered toward Heaven, “For giving me a home! A home of my own.”What would it be like to be raised in a New York orphanage in the 1800’s?
      What if you were a girl who had worked hard for nineteen years caring for your orphanage family, forming sisterly ties to the babies and younger children you tended every day?
     And then what if you and many other orphans were loaded on the Orphan Train and sent West, traveling across the miles and stopping in towns where men and women waited for a child to take home…. but not you.
     And what if you, Kelli Martin, aged almost twenty, were left unadopted at the last stop of the trip, you and one little boy with a brace on his leg?Kelli and Charlie are the only unclaimed orphans left when the train makes an unscheduled stop in Emporia, Kansas. If no one in this town takes them in, they will be on the train with Sister Marter the next day, traveling back to the city where an uncertain future awaits them.
      Could a young rancher be the answer to their prayers: A home for Kelli, a father for Charlie and a loving family for both of them?Orphan Train Bride gives you a window into the heart of an girl whose life has been defined by her status as “orphan,” a girl who learns she is so much more. She has a loving heart and a strong hope, and a Heavenly Father to lead her into her good future. Trials and testing will come, as they did to (and do) to all pioneers, but together they can be a family where none of them are orphaned, widowed or abandoned anymore.
                                                                                                                                                                                                                This review is from: Orphan Train Bride (Kindle Edition)
     Orphan Train Bride by Teresa Lilly is a sweet and enduring love story filled with growth, discovery, and freedom. My heart was caught up in the sweet and innocent circumstances that surrounded this beautifully enchanting story. While historical fiction is not one of the genres that I usual read, I was easily taken in by this lovely story of hope and faith. It deeply touched my heart, and I hated to see it end. I so wanted to know what happened next. Perhaps the author will continue this stunning story in another book if we are lucky.This memorable story highlights the transforming power of love that transcends any hurt and pain that this world can dish out. I felt like I was on the sidelines cheering these amazing characters on as they boldly and courageously walked into the unknown. If not for their steadfast and growing relationship with the Lord, the results of this endeavor might have been very different. Above all, their willingness to adjust and grow even when things got uncomfortable made all the difference in the world.     God’s curious silence in times of change and trial can be very disconcerting and alarming. While our human mind would tell us that at those times we have been abandoned, in reality, He is actually walking next to us. When we grow weary of the journey, it is His loving words of encouragement that floods our soul with life. It is He who holds our hand when the path we walk on grows steep and slippery. His arms carry us over snake infested areas and place our feet firmly on safe ground. He was the strength, love, patience, and hope that this story was built upon. He created a family full of love and promise out of a group of strangers. Without Him as our cornerstone, we have no hope of surviving the challenges that lay before us.Teresa Lilly has written a wonderful story that will touch your heart and reawaken your faith. Her writing has such a humble yet profound presence about it. I read this book in one sitting, and I just couldn’t tear myself away from it. I don’t think any romance collection would be complete without this tender romance built on faith and love.

I just finished reading Orphan Train Bride by Teresa Ives Lilly and have posted my reviews at Amazon, BN, Goodreads, Smashwords and Crossreads.

GOD REALLY DOES HAVE A SPECIAL PLAN FOR ALL OF US
I found this story to be heartbreaking for the life that Kelli and Charlie had lived and inspiring for their faith in God and His blessings. Arriving at the end of the line and overhearing that Carter was looking for a mail order bride, Kelli looking for a way not to return to the orphanage in New York, she approaches Carter with the offer to be his bride. He needs someone to be the mother to his daughter, so they agree to a marriage of convenience. The quote that stayed with me from Carter to Kelli about her life as an orphan, “We are a family, and besides, you were never an orphan to God. He has always been your father.” What a true statement. The love and compassion Kelli shows to other people, especially the orphans and Charlie was executed as Christ would want. The story is never preachy but a reminder of being grateful and appreciative for what we do have and to remember to give thanks. Kelli is the most selfless person that puts others before first in everything she does. We need more people like Kelli and less of Abbys in this world. Disclosure: I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. All thoughts, opinions and ratings are my own.