Two YA Authors to Read this Spring PLUS a Giveaway!

Spring weather in Florida is blissful and hints that summer is just around the corner! Maybe you have an official spring break, or maybe, you’re in my camp and don’t technically get one. Regardless, you can still hop in to some spring reading. If you’re a sunshine girl like me, I suggest grabbing a beach towel, some sun protection, and a book you’ve been wanting to read to enjoy the best of both worlds (in my case, Florida and fiction).

Perhaps you’ve finished your current read and are looking for something new. If you enjoy young adult fiction, here are two authors worth adding to your list. Also, be sure to scroll all the way to the end of this post, because there’s a chance to enter a spring giveaway of 30 books (including one of my own) and a grand prize!

Emily Golus

Today, Golus’ sequel to Escape to Vindor releases, and I’m excited to share my review of Mists of Paracosmia with you. When Golus invited me to be an advance reader, I said yes, even though I was in the middle of wedding planning.

Golus spins another page-turning fantasy adventure in this sequel. This time, instead of Megan translating to Vindor, her younger brother finds himself there. Arden has been bullied at school, and when he hears there are Samurai in Vindor, he thinks he’s found his chance to train and teach the bullies a lesson when he returns home. However, though his journey, he learns the qualities that make a real warrior and hero are sacrificial, not selfish. Plus, Vindor’s problems are much larger than his own, and somehow, he must find a way to help.

I loved how Golus developed the sibling relationship between Megan and Arden. While Arden is trapped in Vindor, Megan is desperate to find a way to get him back—and risks everything in the process. We also see a more mature Megan in this story as she is now in college and learning what true friendship, and perhaps romance, looks like.

The ending was well-foreshadowed and still offered a delightful surprise. Why do the mists destroy memories in Vindor, and who controls them? This fantasy, with its well-crafted world building and lovable characters, offers a clean, thought-provoking, and memorable story readers of all ages will enjoy.

Lisa Mayer

Mayer’s first book in the Aletheian Journeys, The Arrow Bringer, released in March, which happened to be my wedding month. I had planned to read the book during my honeymoon travels but finished before I left because I had to find out what happened to the characters!

From the opening sentence, I was invested in Evie’s story. She’s dying of leukemia yet about to embark on the most important quest of her life, one that will decide the fate of her people and her soul.

Mayer’s descriptions are so vivid that the scenes spring to life in my imagination. Her world-building is masterful, and she makes me genuinely care about the characters. This story very much reminded me of C.S. Lewis’ The Chronicles of Narnia with its redemptive theme. From what I hear, there’s a sequel, and I’ll be watching for it.

Spring Giveaway

Now through May 4, you have the chance to win thirty books and a $100 Amazon gift card! I’ve partnered with other Christian fiction authors in this event, hosted by Celebrate Lit, and am offering one of my own books, a Kindle copy of The Revisionary, as one of the prizes. I’d love for you to take home some good reads and the grand prize!

Click the image below to enter the giveaway or learn more at the Facebook event.

Do you already have books lined up for your spring reading? If so, please share in the comments!

Kristen

 

Tweetable

Two YA Authors to Read this Spring PLUS a Giveaway! – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)

 

 

 

Adored: Book Giveaway & Review

Each year about this time, I start thinking about a daily devotional book to supplement my Scripture reading. Some of my favorites in the past have included Charles Stanley’s Every Day in His Presence and Oswald Chambers’ My Utmost for His Highest. When people ask me for recommendations, I sometimes hesitate because while I enjoy the ones I read, they might not be the best fit for everyone.

That’s why I’m excited to introduce you to Lindsay A. Franklin’s Adored, a daily devotional intentionally designed for young women (middle or high school age). The short selections for each day touch on issues relevant to today’s teens and offer biblical perspective on common struggles and questions, including:

  • Why should I attend church?
  • How can God’s promises help me weather life’s storms?
  • Does God care when I feel like an outsider and like I don’t belong?
  • How do I deal with bullying?
  • How can I invite God’s guidance into my life?
  • Is it possible to truly know God?
  • Why did God create me this way?

Throughout the daily challenges runs the thread of the reader being God’s adored daughter, someone who is precious in His sight. For young women today who constantly feel the world’s pressuring messages, telling them they’re not “good enough,” this devotional offers the much-needed grounding truth that they are unconditionally loved by and valuable to God.

Each daily reading begins with Scripture and ends with space to jot down notes, thoughts, or a prayer. Though not designed to be an exclusive daily reading, this devotional offers an excellent jump-start to a young woman’s daily quiet time. (Speaking from personal experience, I often need something to help focus my mind where it needs to be before diving deeper into God’s Word.)

A Giveaway for You

With Christmas just around the corner, what better way to show a special teenage girl some love than give her something she’ll actually use to help build her relationship with God in the new year? There’s even space in the front of the book for you to personalize the gift.

Today, I’m excited to share a special giveaway opportunity. You can enter to win a copy of Adored! Here’s how:

  • Simply leave a comment below.
  • Share my Facebook post from my author page and tag me.
  • Share the Tweet below.
  • You can do one or all of the above!

I’ll announce the winner at the end of next week’s post, which by the way, you won’t want to miss! My friend and blogger Ashley Jones of BigSisterKnows.com will be sharing tips on how to speak the truth in love.

Take time this week to let a teenager know how much you care and how much God adores her or him.

~ Kristen

Special thanks to The Blythe Daniel Agency for making this book giveaway possible!

 

Tweetables

Adored: Book Giveaway & Review – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)

Book Giveaway! Adored by Lindsay A. Franklin – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)

Grateful Giveaways & Book Specials

book-specials-2This week, the Florida Christian Writers’ Conference starts! Several years ago, I discovered this conference and am so grateful I did. If you’re a writer and would like to learn more how conferences can help you in your craft, visit my For Writers page.

Each year, I usually leave this conference sleep-deprived but with my cup “brimming over.” I’ve made amazing friends there, enjoyed teaching workshops, and soaked up ideas through the workshops of other writers, editors, and agents. (For any who are reading this post and attending FCWC, I hope you’ll join my workshop called Friend Your Audience on Social Media.)

Word Weavers reunited at the Florida Christian Writers Conference
Word Weavers reunited at the Florida Christian Writers’ Conference

The people are the best part of writers’ conferences, but one of my other favorites is the FCWC bookstore. I come home with autographed copies from some of my favorite authors (like Davis Bunn, a few years back) and new authors I’ve met whose works I can’t wait to read.

This year, my young adult fiction books will again be in the bookstore, but I also want to make the Kindle versions available free or at a discounted rate throughout the week. It’s my small way of saying thanks to you, my readers, and to all the writing professionals who have made a difference in my life. I also hope my books, including my upcoming release, and my story might inspire other writers to keep daring and dreaming to be published some day. I can’t wait to see what awesome things God has in store for this year’s conference.

So thank you again! Please feel free to share this post or the picture below with your friends, especially any teens you know.

kindle-special-2
Click on the image to go to Amazon and download your copies.

Enjoy!

Kristen

 

Tweetables

Excited for FCWC 2017 this week! Enjoy my Kindle books free or discounted as a grateful giveaway. – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet) 

Grateful Book Giveaways and Specials – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)

 

Note: Some dates changed due to a discrepancy in my publisher’s promotion instructions. As a result, additional FREE days for my first book replaced a countdown special. 

The Revisionary – Coming June 2017

revisionary-1I have two exciting announcements today! First, I want to congratulate the winner of the random drawing for the Women of Faith books.

Drum roll, please. The winner is … Trudy!

Thank you to everyone who participated! Remember, even if you didn’t win, you can still get these outstanding resources on Amazon or elsewhere. Also, I’ll be doing several more giveaways this year that you won’t want to miss.

Now, for my second big announcement: In partnership with Write Integrity Press, I’m thrilled to share some details about my new young adult fiction novel, releasing this spring!

The Revisionary is a dystopian suspense story laced with American history and flashbacks to its Judeo-Christian heritage. Unlike my first trilogy, which was staged in contemporary times, The Revisionary begins in a futuristic civilization, the remnants of what once was called the United States of America.

The Revisionary: Genre and Preview

A dystopia is the reverse of a utopia (ideal society), and this genre implies that all is far from right in the setting. In 2149, the American Socialists United (ASU) is a technologically barren land cut off from the outside world. Citizens in most squares eke out their existence in cube communities, remotely grateful they survived post-Apocalyptic conditions and painfully aware they owe their lives and fidelity to the Friend appointed by the Dome to rule.

At graduation, young adults receive their work assignments within their squares, except for an elite few selected for their undergraduate achievements. These draftees must report for selective training at the Crystal Globe University and ultimately, service in positions of leadership in the Dome or elsewhere.

The draft brings personal prestige and advancement for the graduate’s family, and no one dares defy it—no one, that is, except for Portia Abernathy’s brother. His rebellion condemned him to a western satellite, a sentence reserved for criminals and raiders.

Now, ten years later, the draft board calls Portia’s name. She hoped it would.

Unlike Darius, she wants to reform the system to make changes that will help the people. If she completes her Revisionary training and earns the Dome seat in her profession, she intends to rewrite the satellite rules to bring back Darius, and for that matter, other unfairly sentenced prisoners.

However, she soon discovers that citizens like Darius aren’t the only ones who need saving, and Portia must decide if it’s better to rewrite the rules or break them like her brother did.

Coming Soon

Fairly soon, I’ll be able to share a sneak preview of my cover. There’s a neat story behind it that I can’t wait to tell you!

In the coming weeks, I also want to introduce you to Portia, my heroine. In the meantime, here’s a trivia question for you:

Portia shares a name with a character from a famous play. Who wrote it, and what was the play’s title?

Also, if you have any questions you’d like me to answer in my next update, please leave a comment below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Kristen

 

Tweetable

Coming this June! New YA Fiction, The Revisionary – @kjhogrefe and @WriteIntegrity (Click to Tweet) 

Giving God Your Future: A Review & Giveaway

women-of-faithbible-study-giveawayThe title of this Women of Faith Bible study immediately grabbed my attention. Since I was a teenager, I’ve wondered about God’s will, how to know it, and how to live it out each day. After all, doing God’s will today determines where I’ll find myself tomorrow.

Although my desire was in the right place, my motivation wasn’t. I mistakenly thought if I followed the straight and narrow, I’d be able to better manage my life with fewer surprises.

Instead, God’s will sometimes means I have just enough light to see the next step. For a planner like me, that’s been hard. (If you can relate,  chapter 3 “It’s My Life” is for you.)

However, the better we know God’s Word, the better we know God, and the more confidently we can trust him.

That’s why this study has resonated with me. In the foreword, Thelma Wells explains the the book’s purpose this way:

This courageous study will help you to become willing to trust God with your everything because He is the God of everything.

Amen!

Giving God Your Future: A Review

We pick up some books to help us unwind from a long day and entertain us with a story. This Women of Faith study is not one of those books.

It’s designed to be a companion, a tool for those who want to dig deep into God’s Word and learn more about His purpose for their lives. When I open it, I come prepared with my Bible, notebook and pen.

The introduction to each chapter begins with an example or story, along with a “clearing the cobwebs” question that makes sure the brain is ready to engage.

Yes, this book is a study, either for your individual quiet time or for use with a Bible study group. Each chapter breaks down further into sections, consisting of Bible passages to read and questions to consider. It immerses you in God’s Word as you learn more about who God is and what kind of plan He has for your life.

It’s organized into twelve chapters, ideally one for each week of the study. Each lesson concludes with “digging deeper” passages for those who want to spend some extra time learning about the topic.

The chapters also finish with a short section called “Trinkets to Treasure.” These “trinkets” are visual objects or imaginary “souvenirs” to help us remember the lesson itself. For example, chapter one talks about the role of the Good Shepherd in our lives, and the trinket is a “shepherd’s crook,” reminding us “that the Lord will lead us aright” (8).

At first, I thought, “That’s weird. It’s not tangible; it’s just a drawing.” Then, I came to chapter 10 where the trinket is a level. The study says, “We use them [levels] to keep things squared up around the house. We can use this little gadget to remind us to keep our lives squared up with God” (85).

The day before, I had used a mini level to hang a picture in my new house. I’m terrible with tools, but it did help the picture not be conspicuously crooked.

Aha moment! Now the trinket made sense to me. How I would love to have a level that would keep me lined up with God’s Word, reminding me His promises are always true and His Word is unchanging!

This experience taught me that there’s something in a Bible study for everyone. What resonates with one person might not with another. The bottom line, though, is that God’s Word holds the guidance and direction we need for our futures, and when we meditate on it, we won’t be disappointed.

Giveaway: Not One, but Three Studies!

I’m grateful to The Blythe Daniel Agency for the opportunity to review this study and give away, not just one, but three Women of Faith studies!

The winner of the random drawing for Giving God Your Future will also receive the other two, either for personal use or to share with someone else.

To enter, simply do one of the following: 

  • Leave a comment below. (It can be a comment about this post or something as simple as: Please enter me into your drawing.)
  • Subscribe to the KristenHogrefe.com newsletter.
  • Share this post on Twitter and tag me @kjhogrefe.
  • Share my Facebook post with your friends.

The winner of the random drawing will be announced on this blog next week.

On that note, you won’t want to miss next week’s post! I’m also going to share a sneak preview about my upcoming book with Write Integrity Press.

Until then, have a blessed week!

Kristen

 

Tweetable

Women of Faith Book Review & Giveaway – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)

Christmas Giving & Book Giveaway

christmas-givingGiving is one of the most beautiful parts of the Christmas season. As Karen Ehman explains in her book Listen, Love Repeat, there’s more than one way to give. Yes, people primarily think of gifts, but giving of one’s time is often even more valuable.

A friend shared a story how someone had decorated her tree and house for Christmas a few years ago after she had her baby, and that gift of time meant more than any present.

Are you looking for opportunities to give? Am I? Let’s not be so wrapped up in our own schedules that we miss opportunities to bless others.

To paraphrase Mother Teresa, how much love do we put into our Christmas giving? Let’s load others up with love this year.

Free Book Download – Today Only!

Today and just today, my book Captive Beneath the Bahamian Sky is available FREE in kindle version (regardless of whether you have Kindle Unlimited or not). This is the first book in my series Wings of the Dawn, a young adult Christian suspense trilogy.

Click here to download your free copy. Merry Christmas on me!

Next Week

I’m super excited to share a beautiful, biblical Christmas craft idea with you all next week. If you enjoy making items to share at Christmas, you won’t want to miss next week’s post.

Have a blessed week!

~ Kristen

Tweetables

Load others up with love this Christmas. – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)

Free YA Christian Suspense on Kindle today – @kjhogrefe (Click to Tweet)