It started with the ash trees…a song and story of my heart, and book giveaway!

It started with the ash trees, the inspiration behind my new novel Before I Saw You. The bare branches of hundreds of dying ash trees in Indiana stuck out against the lush green of the rest of landscape, and the sight broke my heart.

If the emerald ash borer beetles haven’t reached your state yet, count it a blessing.

Researchers aren’t positive, but they suspect a barge carrying international cargo with bug-infested pallets inadvertently introduced the emerald ash borer to North America several years back. At first, the bugs claimed acres of trees in Michigan. But soon, the damage extended exponentially. The toll on the ash trees was quick and devastating and continues still today.

Some say ash trees will eventually become extinct in North America, but I hope they are wrong. Scientists are beginning to discover treatments to combat the insects, and the ash tree in our front yard is one example of their success.

So what does my heartbreak over ash trees have to do with a story about a young woman and an unexpected pregnancy, set against the backdrop of the opioid epidemic in Southern Indiana?

Click here to find out this and more in the rest of this blog post over at Tricia Goyer’s place!

Big, blessed book giveaway!

Without readers, a book is nothing.

Stories only come to life when someone reads them.

Because of that, and because of a heart overflowing with gratitude to those who read my books, I’m celebrating by giving away EIGHTEEN signed copies* of my newest release, How Sweet the Sound to kick off the holiday season!

It’s my own door-buster of a celebration.

Leave a comment below, telling us what you are most grateful for this year.

The first EIGHTEEN people* to comment will win!

It’s that simple.

And I’m that grateful. And then some.

*U.S. addresses only please. Winners of previous giveaways on my blog not eligible.

Lead Me Home #bookgiveaway and $0.99 e-book special!

It’s the pinnacle of summer, brimming with homemade ice cream, backyard barbecues, kids catching fireflies in the small town park as they wait for fireworks, and evenings on the front porch swing. 

It’s 4th of July weekend, and the only thing else you need is a good book.

Well, I’m happy to oblige you with a month-long e-book sale and prize package giveaway of my novel, Lead Me Home, the perfect book for summer, set in the sweltering heat of the fictional, heartland town of Sycamore, Indiana. There’s tragedy and romance, a little suspense and heartache, a few cute cows and a lot of hope.

To enter the contest, there are two simple rules:

1) POST THE LINK to this blog post AND ONE OF THE PICTURES BELOW on Instagram or Twitter ALONG WITH THE HASHTAG #LeadMeHomeNovelSpecial.

2) Tag THREE friends in each post. 

You can enter more than once on either Twitter or Instagram, as long as you tag three different book-loving friends each time. I will collect all the names of the entrants and announce the winner on the morning of July 4th.

Winners must will receive a signed copy of Lead Me Home, the barn wood framed sign in this picture, and a $10 Dairy Queen gift card. (Sorry, I’m not giving up the typewriter!)

The great news is if you don’t win, you have through July 31 to buy the e-book for less than a buck at your favorite e-book retailer. (Click here.)

Now that’s something to set off a few fireworks about, don’t you think?