January 15, 2018 04:22 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
Long before becoming a writer I was an avid reader, and in 2008, I decided to start reviewing books, as well. That’s when I founded my review website, The Hope Chest Reviews. Since becoming a published author, I haven’t stopped writing reviews of the books I read for pleasure, in part because I’m now more aware than ever just how important reviews can be to a author in helping readers discover them. That’s why I stubbornly insist upon keeping this up indefinitely, despite the extra time it takes.
Ever since I started my review site, I’ve followed the annual tradition of posting my Best of the Year list to highlight all the very best books I read the previous year. Once again, I have an eclectic group of books from a wide variety of genres.
January 13, 2018 03:34 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
I only had one five-star read in December. It was an older romance and something of a hidden gem of the genre. It was my first Amish romance, but it isn’t your typical Amish romance. It contains some mild sensuality, mild language, and mature themes such as infidelity and domestic abuse, which may bother some readers of this usually squeaky clean sub-genre. Obviously none of that offended me, because it ended up being a great read that I highly recommend to anyone who wouldn’t be.
Jacob had been best friends with Rachel since childhood, and by their teen years, he’d fallen in love with her. But when he was at his most vulnerable point, following the death of his mother, his brother, Simon, made claims that Rachel was in love with Simon and had agreed to marry him. Devastated, Jacob renounced his Amish heritage and went out into the “English” world. He tried a few different things, but nothing seemed to be a good fit. Then he chanced to discover that a brief affair with an “English” woman had resulted in twins whose mother had died in childbirth. Jacob wants to be a good father to his children, but the only way he knows to raise them is the Amish way, so he humbles himself and returns to his former community even though he knows it will be torturous to see Rachel with his brother every day. Knowing his little ones need a mother figure in their lives, he asks Rachel to look after them. Then Jacob discovers that Simon has been abusing her for their entire marriage and takes steps to prevent his brother from ever hurting her again. He also offers his comfort to Rachel which leads to an unintended night of passion and unexpected consequences. Jacob is a total sweetheart, a kind, gentle beta hero who I completely fell in love with. He’s a good son, an incredible father, and a tender lover to Rachel. I loved his support for her efforts to publish a newspaper and most of all for his protectiveness toward her. When their affair comes out, he also tries to take full responsibility for what happened and is ready to sacrifice everything to make sure that Rachel and his kids have the future they deserve. I loved Jacob to pieces and he definitely became one of my favorite romance heroes of 2017.
Tags: Annette Blair
January 13, 2018 02:58 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
As promised in my last newsletter, here’s my rather lengthy update on my writing activities in 2017 (or lack thereof :-)). I’m sure you’re all eagerly waiting for me to publish a new book, and I swear I’m working on it. In all honesty, I wasn’t being a total slacker in the writing department last year. I just had some unexpected things come up, as well as some things that simply didn’t go as planned.
As you all know from my Bookaversary celebration this month, I published my third novel, Butterfly Serenade, in January of 2017. Normally, I try to do things at a steady but leisurely pace, because I have an anxiety disorder and my brain has a tendency to revolt if I put too much pressure on it. Although I managed to stay sane, I did push myself pretty hard in the months leading up to the release in order to meet my goal of getting it out by mid-January, which left me a little burned out. Even after that, I had a lot of new release marketing to take care of, so that was what I focused on for the next couple of months.
Tags: The Key to Her Heart
January 10, 2018 03:10 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
Tags: Butterfly Serenade
January 3, 2018 12:31 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
Tags: Butterfly Serenade
December 20, 2017 07:06 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
As 2017 comes to a close, I find myself with two extra 2018 wall calendars. So this month I’m offering two additional giveaways for each of them. The second is from the World Wildlife Fund and features a dozen amazing images of wildlife. If you love animals as much as I do, this 8.5” x 11” calendar is sure to look beautiful on your wall and brighten your new year. In addition, each winner may also choose an eBook copy of any one of my books: His Heart’s Desire, Heart of the Season or Butterfly Serenade.
Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for your chance to win. International entries on this one are OK. Good luck!
December 20, 2017 07:02 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
As 2017 comes to a close, I find myself with two extra 2018 wall calendars. So this month I’m offering two additional giveaways for each of them. The first is titled Cowboys: Hot off the Range and features a dozen images of sexy cowboys in their “native environment” from photographer Rob Lang. This 12” x 12” calendar is sure to heat up your new year. In addition, each winner may also choose an eBook copy of any one of my books: His Heart’s Desire, Heart of the Season or Butterfly Serenade.
Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for your chance to win. Good luck!
December 20, 2017 01:27 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
For the month of November, I had only one five-star read. It was actually a re-read of an old favorite from an author I’ve long admired. In fact, when I started reading regularly again ten years ago after a long absence from it, this author was the first one I picked up and this book was among some of the first of hers that I read. Despite being a tad bit frustrated with the heroine, the hero was yummy and the story was an intense, angsty, romantic one that gave me all kinds of feels, just the way I like them. Not to mention, I basically got two romances for the price of one, which made it even better. This is definitely a book that I could read again and again.
Tags: Lisa Kleypas
November 17, 2017 07:28 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
This month for my second giveaway, I have two fun magnets from Leanin’ Tree and photographer, Frances Loza, to offer to two lucky winners. Each magnet is about the size of a business card. It depicts a sexy, shirtless cowboy with a beautiful white horse and says, “Gosh, I love horses!” In addition, each winner may also choose an eBook copy of any one of my books: His Heart’s Desire, Heart of the Season or Butterfly Serenade.
Use the Rafflecopter widget below to enter for your chance to win. This giveaway is open to my newsletter subscribers only, but if you’re not signed up yet, no worries. Just go to my newsletter sign-up page, follow the simple steps to start receiving my monthly emails, then come back here to enter. International entries OK. Good luck!
November 17, 2017 03:46 PM Posted by juliannadouglas
October was a near-perfect reading month for me. All but one of the five books and one novella I read last month rated five stars for me, which is virtually unheard of. I don’t know if I’ve ever come that close to having a clean sweep month before. While it was great for my reader morale, it, of course, made it rather difficult to decide which book to highlight as my Book of the Month. I finally settled on a book that is the final full-length story in a long-running historical romance series that I’ve loved from the start. In fact, I’m a little sad to see the series winding down after such a long run, but it’s been a great one. Not to mention, although there are a couple more novellas forthcoming, this book was a wonderful wrap-up to the main part of the series, sending it out on a high note, so I can’t really complain.
Tags: Elizabeth Hoyt