The Choice

September 16, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

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Saturday Matinee

The Choice

Have you ever fallen in love, even though your love interest seems to be the wrong choice for a mate?

The Choice is a love story that is based on a Nicolas Sparks novel (no, I’ve never read the book). When Gabby meets Travis, her new neighbor, she’s irritated because he appears to be a jerk, playing his music too loud. When Gabby’s medical doctor boyfriend goes out of town, this story takes an interesting turn.

The attraction between Gabby (a medical student) and Travis (a vet) is a classic example of opposites attract. When I first started watching this movie, I was bored. But, the movie got better as the attraction between Travis and Gabby deepens and then there was someone who objected to their relationship.

I loved seeing the scenes on the water. Seeing folks hanging out with friends, having a good time, made for some pleasurable viewing.

Travis falls HARD for Gabby. He even takes her for a boat ride to show her his secret island. Gabby struggles to accept Travis’s love. Is it right for them to continue dating, in spite of her circumstances?

I loved seeing the animals in this movie. It’s so cute to see how animals can play a part in bringing two people together.

Overall, a good movie. I was NOT expecting that traumatic event near the end. I don’t want to say what happens because it’ll spoil the film for you.

So, have you ever fallen in love, even though your love interest seems to be the wrong choice for a mate?

Any Dream Will Do

September 10, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

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Any Dream Will Do by Debbie Macomber

Have you ever been forced to make a fresh start in a new environment? How did you handle it? Did you fit in?

When Shay is released from prison, she’s alone with no place to go. When she shows up at a church, she encounters Drew, a widower/pastor/single father. He’s still grieving over his wife’s untimely death and when he spots Shay, it’s during a dark moment in his life. He kindly offers Shay his help.

Shay is a bit suspicious of Drew, but, she accepts his help. After all, she has no choice. She has a chip on her shoulder since she’d been imprisoned for embezzlement. She’d only stolen the money to help her younger brother, Caden. After all, his life would be in danger if she didn’t give him the money.

Her mistake cost her years in prison, and now she’s ready to make a fresh start.

This book showed how judgmental and superficial Christians can be. Although a congregation should follow Jesus’s example, that doesn’t always happen. Sometimes, you just have to ask a congregation, What would Jesus do?

I loved to see Shay change and grow within this story. She got along with Drew’s children and they loved her. Drew finds he enjoys spending time with Shay, but, her past proves to be problematic for several in the congregation.

I thought this was a refreshing book and it was a bit different than Macomber’s other books. I guess it was different because it was about an ex-con, trying to make a fresh start. Shay gives it her best, leaning on Jesus for guidance.

So, have you ever been forced to make a fresh start in a new environment? How did you handle it? Did you fit in?

The Dressmaker

September 9, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

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Saturday Matinee

The Dressmaker

Have you ever had a childhood experience that haunted your life?

When Tilly returns to her childhood home in the secluded Australian outback, she’s changed…a lot. She’s now a successful dressmaker and the ladies in town are clamoring for her to make them a new dress. The town has little access to fashionable clothes and Tilly is their ticket to looking beautiful for their beaus.

But, Tilly is not in town to make dresses. She approaches her mom, desperate to recall the details to a murder which she’s forgotten. Perhaps being back in this God-forsaken town will jog her memory.

Tilly also connects with Teddy, a sympathetic childhood friend who develops a soft spot for her.

I really enjoyed this movie. The movie showed how rotten and unforgiving people can be, but, also you saw people jump to Tilly’s defense to help solve the details of the murder mystery. There were so many emotions packed in this movie: love, hate, fear. A tragic event happens that I was NOT expecting. It’s difficult to talk more about the emotions without giving spoilers.

This movie had me mesmerized from the beginning and the acting and the scenery was AMAZING! Such a treat to watch this film and I highly recommend it.

Kate Winslet is one of my favorite actresses – due in part to her acting in Titanic (my all-time favorite movie). Kate and the rest of the cast did great in this movie.

So, have you ever had a childhood experience that haunted your life?

Above All Things

September 3, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

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Above All Things by Deborah Raney

Have you ever discovered a big secret about your spouse? Was the secret so big that it affected your marriage?

Judd and Evette are happily married, expecting their first child. Judd receives a phone call: his former fiancée is hospitalized and for the first day time, he’s become aware that he has a six-year-old bi-racial daughter. He needs to come and get his child (Jolie) since the child’s mother cannot care for her.

Evette is stunned to hear this news. She has mixed feelings about bringing a biracial daughter into their home. Judd is just as stunned as he wonders why his ex never shared that he’d fathered a child.

This novel touches upon a lot of deep subjects. The main themes are race relations and forgiveness. Overall a good read. The author did a great job with research regarding African-Americans. I especially liked how she addressed the issue of Jolie’s hair – extremely realistic.

So, have you ever discovered a big secret about your spouse? Was the secret so big that it affected your marriage?

The Underground Railroad Brides Collection

September 1, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

Here’s the cover for The Underground Railroad Brides Collection (Barbour Publishing) – coming June 2018! (tentative release date)

Book Giveaway on Guest Blog Post

August 28, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

Come read the guest blog post on Lena Nelson Dooley’s blog for Picnics and Promises. Oh, there will be book giveaways on Lena’s blog, too!

Inspirational Romance Giveaway – Enter To Win A Free Kindle!

August 20, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

I hope all of you are having a blessed Sunday! We’ve been having some HOT weather and we’ve been having air conditioning problems since last April. After getting a new system installed we’ve had the repairman to come out countless times. It’s such a mess to deal with when it’s been so hot.

My summer has been fabulous otherwise! I’ve been taking a lot of time of from work to write.

School is starting soon, and I’ve paired with some other authors to offer you a unique opportunity. Come enter to win a FREE Kindle! Please read the rules before entering!

 

Between Friends by Debbie Macomber

August 16, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

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Between Friends by Debbie Macomber

Have you ever been best friends with somebody for decades, since childhood?

Jillian and Lesley have been best friends since grade school. After high school, their lives change drastically since Lesley feels she has to marry her boyfriend, and Jillian goes away to college. Jillian’s career flourishes while Lesley is home housebound and unhappy. This is a highly unusual novel because the story is told in the form of letters. I’ve never read an entire book with letters back and forth between several characters.

The story spans decades, starting in the sixties. It’s a great way to see some modern history. This book also shows how deep friendships can be. I really enjoyed this highly unusual book. It’s an amazing story about true friendship.

So, have you ever been best friends with somebody for decades? Were you friends when you were children? I’d love to hear about it! Leave me a comment!

Author Interview!

August 3, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

Come read my author interview on Open Book Blog!

Sweetbriar Cottage

July 19, 2017 Posted by Cecelia Dowdy

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Sweetbriar Cottage

Have you ever known a female barber?

Josephine, the town’s beautiful female barber, continues to be haunted from a past traumatic experience. The ghosts of her past affect her so deeply that she wonders if she is able to accept true love. The skeletons that invade her closet are so strong that it affects her marriage. She still feels bad about what what she’s done to her “ex-husband” Noah.

Noah has been a loner since he “divorced” Josephine. He lives on a ranch far away from town. He works with animals as he struggles to get over Josephine’s deception.

However, something happens and Josephine and Noah are forced to spent every waking moment together, alone, far away from humanity, for several days. This experience makes both of them take a good hard look at their lives and examine the nature of their mistakes.

This book was so good. This story gives an example of how something deeply traumatic can affect the view we have of ourselves, making us believe lies about ourselves. I thought that Noah was wonderful, and I really felt bad for Josephine. You’ll find yourself rooting for both of these characters in this deeply emotional story of true love.

I also thought it was sort of unique to read about a female barber. I seldom see female barbers. Usually a female works in a beauty shop and seeing Josephine as a woman barber was a refreshing change from the norm.

So, have you ever known a female barber?