WE HAVE WINNERS!!!!

 Joanne Bischoff’s Blog Tour is over, and the contest is now closed. BUT … winners are announced below and Joanne’s blog that follows is STILL fun and very inspirational to read, so enjoy!

Thank you to everyone who visited with Joanne and me during the blog hop. We were all so touched by your comments and stories.

The five winners below will each win one of Joanne’s books and one of the hosting author’s books. 

From Katie Ganshert’s blog: Morgan Tarpley

From Carrie Turansky’s blog: Linda Finn

From Beth Vogt’s blog: Wilani Wahl

From Jocelyn Green’s blog: Juanita Decuir

From Julie Lessman’s blog: Micaela Wood

And the GRAND PRIZE winner of the bundle of country goodies + the eReader is:

Ruth Anderson

CONGRATULATION, LADIES!!!

Julie, here and you know what?  I can’t count the number of times I’ve received e-mails from readers telling me they experienced such extreme emotions when reading my novels, that they either threw one of my books across the room or wanted to. I always smile when I read that because quite frankly, as a CDQ (caffeinated drama queen) who LOVES drama and angst, that’s what I live to do as an author — wring every last drop of emotion out of my readers!! ๐Ÿ™‚

Or at least I did.

That is, until I experienced it myself, reading Christy-nominee Joanne Bischoff’s new Cadence of Grace series. No, I didn’t throw Joanne’s book against the wall, but I did have to resort to sleep aids when I finished book 2, something that’s never happened to me before. Because there was NO WAY I was going to peacefully nod off to sleep. Not after Joanne put me through the wringer with her powerfully written novels of Appalachian romance. Let me tell you, people, those babies grabbed hold of me hard and would NOT. LET. GO!!

I’m sorry, but in my book, that’s fabulous writing, so it’s no surprise whatsoever that Joanne’s debut book Be Still My Soul, book 1 in the Cadence of Grace series, was up for a Christy Award this year. That alone, along with the lack of sleep and angst the woman put me through, should be enough to tick me off. But when you read an author of Joanne’s caliber and talent and then she turns out to be one of the nicest, sweetest, most humble human beings you’ve ever met, well boo, you just gotta take a step back and give the little brat her due! ๐Ÿ™‚

And so, it is my extreme honor and privilege to sponsor Day Five of Joanne’s “Something for Every Reader” blog tour so that you, too, cannot only experience the beautiful literary talent of this amazing new author, but have FIVE chances to win Joanne’s book plus one book from each of the following hosting authors:  Katie Ganshert, Carrie Turanksy, Beth Vogt, Jocelyn Green and me! The grand prize is a country basket with peach butter, wild blueberry soap, a cookbook, and your choice of E-READER (up to $350 value!), so be sure to check out the link at the end of Joanne’s blog below for all the details.

Without further ado, I give you my good (and very talented) friend Joanne Bischoff.

A bit about how I met Julie

A mutual friend introduced me to Julie while we were both in St. Louis and I confess, I was a bit star struck! Back home, a few weeks later, a comment came through on my blog. It was the Julie Lessman…I nearly fell out of my chair! I’d blogged on the makings of a hero along with a giveaway and Julie commented, entering to win the books. Completely amazed, I wrote her to tell her thank you for her sweet words and that I would love to send her some. She wrote right back, and in her gracious spirit, offered to send me some of hers!

She also warned me that if I didn’t like her books, her feelings wouldn’t be hurt and I mentioned that she might not be too pleased with Gideon O’Riley, the hero of my story, when she first meets him. It dawned on us that we had something in common.

We chatted about the nerves that go into writing a story where characters do things that can send the reader’s jaw to the floor. The knowledge that a reader just might want to throw it across the room (both Julie’s and my books have taken flight a time or two!) But we agreed that it’s worth that risk in hopes of reaching hearts with a story of transformation. It has nothing to do with the shock factor, and everything to do with the picture of how people can change.

I’m reading A Passion Most Pure… and while I didn’t throw the book across the room, I’ve most certainly put Collin McGuire in a time out. *wink* The other day, I emailed Julie that Gideon and Collin would have been friends. Oh yes. Those Irish boys would have gotten into quite a bit of trouble together.

Flawed characters…finding their way home

I’m about halfway through A Passion Most Pure right now, and my favorite part about Julie’s book is the way the O’Connor family has welcomed Collin into their home. It’s his happy place. The place where this wandering and lost soul sees something different in a group of people—and himself—when he’s with them. A light in his life. I can tell he’s not entirely sure of what to make of that, but there it is, drawing him closer to them. Not because of who the O’Connors are, but because of Who is alive in their hearts. There’s just something about it… It’s so clear how Collin needs this family and at the same time, there’s a deep sense that the O’Connor’s may just need him right back. I can’t think of anything more fulfilling to that young man’s aching spirit, then to be loved and needed in all the right ways.

I’ve been thinking a lot over the last few years about families. Mentors. Those people who come into our path at just the right moment. It’s a God-thing, isn’t it?

Often when people ask me where the Cadence of Grace series came about, I tell them how it began with the heroine and hero…

But before that, which I never really share, is that I’d already had the Bennetts tucked in the back of my mind and heart. For those of you who don’t know the Bennetts, they are the older couple who takes the young O’Rileys under their wing.

Months before I began the first words of Be Still My Soul, I had woken from a dream with a heavy, heavy heart. The dream had been of an older couple living in the rural mountains of Appalachia. They were working alongside one another, both of them wondering—that with no living children—what the future might hold for them in the years to come. I woke and couldn’t shake the melancholy of that memory, so I quickly jotted down the image of who the Bennetts were, determined that somehow, I would not only write this older couple’s story, but I would find a way to bring them the hope of a family they yearned for. Little did I know that soon after that, Lonnie and Gideon would be wandering the mountainside lost and alone. So desperately needing guidance. A shelter, a home. And a story was in the making.

For there are times that a family can be born through circumstance, faith, and love.

 ***

Julie again, and I want to thank you for visiting Joanne and me on the “A Book For Every Reader” blog tour! Leave a comment answering one of the questions below to be entered to win not one but TWO books — one of Joanne’s and one of mine.

PLEASE NOTE: YOU MUST PUT YOUR NAME AND EMAIL WHERE IT SAYS “AUTHOR NAME” AND “AUTHOR EMAIL” OR I WILL NOT KNOW WHO YOU ARE!! ๐Ÿ˜

Also, to enter in the grand giveaway prize which includes country goodies and an e-reader (up to $350), simply hop on over and fill out the entry form at the following link, where you’ll also find all the official details:

CLICK HERE TO ENTER FOR GRAND PRIZE

Finally, be sure to stop in at each of the following author blogs to increase your chances of winning Joanne’s book as well as one from each of the hosting authors: Katie Ganshert, Carrie Turanksy, Beth Vogt, Jocelyn Green.

Contest open until midnight Friday, September 27, and winners will be drawn on Saturday, September 28 and contacted via email. Thank you for joining us!

Hugs,

Julie

QUESTIONS:

Has there been a mentor in your life who showed you God’s love?

Has there been a time you were able to be that guiding light for someone else?

And… if you’re up for a bit of fun: have you ever wanted to throw a book against the wall? *smile*

 

JOANNE’S BIO:

Christy Award-finalist and author of The Cadence of Grace seriesJoanne Bischof has a deep passion for Appalachian culture and writing stories that shine light on God’s grace and goodness. She lives in the mountains of Southern California with her husband and their three children. When she’s not weaving Appalachian romance, she’s blogging about faith, folk music, and the adventures of country living that bring her stories to life.

  http://www.joannebischof.com/extras/blogtour/