Archives For Laura Frantz

You know that lucky woman who gets to sneak away with a book while everyone else in the world is consumed with busyness? Maybe she relaxes in the tub or on the beach or on a deck overlooking a beautiful view. For a little while, she is removed from her own time and place and caught up in a world of dashing heroes, innocent maidens, romance, danger, intrigue . . .

Well, if that woman ever gets to be you, the experience will not be complete unless you have a Laura Frantz book in your hands!

When I began to write this review of Laura’s latest book, The Colonel’s Lady, the phrase that kept coming back to my mind was swept away.

With the first longing look between beautiful Roxana Rowan and dazzling Colonel Cassius McLinn, this novel immersed me in the period and feel of Fort Endeavor in the Kentucke Territory of 1779.

Our heroine, Roxie, is a lady of genteel birth, who travels to the fort with a ragtag group of fallen women, yet retains her innocence. She experiences the harsh realities of life and death as American soldiers wage war against both British and Indian warriors, yet retains her optimism. While others around her fall prey to the lax morals of the frontier culture, she retains her purity. And though she sometimes runs ahead of God and questions His ways, she retains her faith.

Roxana’s world is populated by colorful characters. Among my favorites were Bella, the outspoken washerwoman who takes it upon herself to become Roxie’s ladies’ maid, mentor, and unofficial life coach, and Abby, the tiny sprite of a girl who steals the hearts of everyone in the camp without uttering a word.

This story played in my mind like a lovely old movie. (from Drums Along the Mohawk)

And as for Roxana’s love interest, Colonel McLinn is an old-fashioned, hard-riding, tender with children, outspoken to the point of rudeness, angst-ridden enough to know he needs the love of a good woman, brave and upright hero.

There are just too many great scenes to mention—Roxie charming the Indian warriors, Cass and Roxie’s first dance, Cass and the Indian princess, a romantic cribbage game, and much, much more.

Sounds like your cup of tea? Then follow this link to purchase this sweeping saga for yourself. As soon as it arrives, clear your calendar, fix that cup of tea, and make yourself comfortable (see above for location suggestions).  You’re about to embark on a wonderful trip!

Meet the author: Only a special writer could find it within themselves to consistently create such sweet heroines. Laura Frantz is one of the kindest authors I’ve “met” on the internet. Follow this link to her website and get to know her better. You’ll see where her incredible stories come from.

Laura’s first book, The Frontiersman’s Daughter, is a free download for Kindle right now. It’s a lovely story with a brave, beautiful heroine and a hero who reminds me of Neil MacNeill from ChristyYou can download it here.

Giveaway: This post is the first August Giveaway Post! I’m giving away a $10 Amazon Gift Card at the end of the month. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post. There will be other designated giveaway posts in the coming days to increase your chances of winning. How fun is that?!

***The Colonel’s Lady is available August 2011 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group. Thanks to the good folks at Revell for providing a copy of this beautiful book for me to review!

The Season’s of Love Progressive Blog Party is drawing to a close. If you’re a book lover, you’ll want to stop in at the various sites and sign up for the drawings the bloggers are hosting.

Saturday’s party post features first-time author Jody Hedlund. I loved her book The Preacher’s Bride, which was based on the life of Elizabeth Bunyan, John Bunyan’s second wife. You can read an interview with her at this link to Dark Glass Ponderings. Julia and Jody are giving away a copy of Jody’s book. I believe they’re also giving away Godiva chocolate!

Sunday’s post features one of my favorite authors, Laura Frantz. Laura writes inspirational historical fiction that will not only take you to another place and time but will also touch your heart with the truths of God. You can find Laura, plus a 3-book giveaway, at this link for the Black and Gold Girl’s Book Spot. Bookmark the spot so you’ll remember to visit after church!

And to remind you to return later, here are Laura’s book covers for you to enjoy . . .

July 2011

Also, I think it’s not too late to get in on some of the previous giveaways. Here are the links: Continue Reading…

How would you like to read a great book, share your thoughts about it, and maybe win a prize? That’s what I’m inviting you to do for this month’s Christian Fiction Book Club. What’s the book? Whichever one you choose!

By letting each participant choose her own book, I’m hoping to entice more of you—new friends, old friends, former student/friends, homeschooling moms, moms with little kids, busy working moms, grandmothers, non-bloggers, and bloggers—to participate.

So I’m calling this month’s chapter of the club, the Christian Fiction February Free-for-all.

Here’s how it works:

  • Find a Christian fiction book that you can read by the end of the month. It might be the book you have right there on the top of your To-Be-Read pile. If you have nothing in mind, I’ve listed some wonderful suggestions in this post.
  • Read your book in time to post here between February 25th and 28th.
  • Jot down your thoughts about the book. Sometimes it helps to answer a few specific questions about the story. If your book doesn’t come with discussion questions, I’ll be posting a few on a special page in my header soon.
  • Then you can choose how you’d like to share with the rest of us: 1. You can stop back in on book club day and post a mini-review of your book in the comments section. Or . . .
  • 2. You can email me your thoughts about the book, and I’ll include them in my post on book club day. I’d love to put your first name, the state you’re from, and maybe a picture of you with your comments. My email is reneeasmith61 [at] yahoo [dot] com. Emails should be sent by February 23rd.
  • 3. If you’re a blogger, you can blog about your book. Then link up here on book club day.

Do you feel like you’re back in English class? Are you thinking, “Why should I take the time to do this?” I have an answer for that question . . .

  • When a new friend tells me what she likes about a favorite character, I catch a glimpse of what she values in others.
  • Often when a booklover explains why she relates to a particular theme or situation in a story, she ends up relating a real-life experience that helps me know her better.
  • When I find out someone I just met loves the same characters and books that have meant much to me, I know I’ve found a kindred spirit.

As C. S. Lewis said, “I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment.” So talking about the books that bring us closer to the Lord can bring us closer to each other.

Don’t know where to start? I have favorite books for every mood and season of life I’ve experienced! Here are some suggestions from among my many favorites. Most of these books have been out for a few years, so you may be able to find them through your local library. Did you miss any of these treasures the first time around? Or maybe it’s been a while since you’ve read one of these. They’re all worth a second look! Continue Reading…

For some reason, bloggers enjoy passing awards around to each other. I’ve received several blog awards from my new bloggy friends and decided to put them all together into one post. Here’s how it works: 1. I tell you about the bloggers who gave me the awards. 2. I reveal seven random pieces of trivia about myself. 3. I pass the award on to fifteen other sites.

Part I: These are the bloggers who gave me my Stylish Blogger Awards.

Amy at Walking in His Grace. Amy is a young mother who is working on building a Christian home with her hubby, Joshua.
Janet at Nana’s Sweeties or Life is Beautiful. Janet writes about her adventures with her husband Mike, two sons, and eight grandkids.
Tara at Undeserving Grace. Tara is a wife and mother who describes herself as a Christian trying to find her best to give God each day because He deserves nothing less.

Kait and Katy

And my young friend Kait. Kait (pictured on the left) has a personal blog called Reviews by Jane. And she blogs with her best friend Katy at Book Ponderings. Kait is a Christian homeschooled teen, the oldest of 7 kids, and all her siblings are boys. However, her mom is expecting a baby in a few weeks. So the whole family is hoping baby #8 will be a girl. She and Katy review books and share glimpses of their lives on their sites. (Katy is also a homeschooler and 3rd eldest of 10 kids.) They’re also co-authoring a novel together.

A few months back, two other blogging buddies passed awards to me, but I didn’t make posts at that time. So belated thanks to Emily of Scribbles from Emily and Amber of Seasons of Humility. I’ve featured their blogs in the past but wanted to mention them again today.

Part II: Seven random pieces of trivia about myself.

1. During my first year teaching at a Christian high school in the suburbs of Chicago, I existed on boxed Macaroni and Cheese for the better part of a year. Our salaries were small, I was far from home, and times were tough. But I loved my students and enjoyed every minute of it! However, I couldn’t eat the boxed stuff for years after that.

These girls are not us!

2. When my sisters and I were living at home,we invented games to pass the time while we did our chores. We played one of our favorites while doing dishes. One would sing a song and stop on a certain word. The next player had to sing a line of another song that began with that exact word. It was fun–try it!

3. When I was in junior high, I read almost every fiction book in the young adult section of our town’s library and moved on to the Harlequin romances they kept on the shelves.

Harlequin’s were much different back then–sweet and clean. One of my favorite authors was Betty Neels. Many of her books took place in Holland and starred un-thin, non-perfect-looking heroines who did noble things with their lives like nursing people back to health or sacrificing to raise a relative’s children. And they always seemed to marry doctors . . . I really wanted to go to Holland!

4. I grew up in the historic town of Kinderhook, New York, birthplace of our 8th President Martin Van Buren. Most etymologists agree that the expression OK originated with his political campaign and stood for Old Kinderhook. So you have one of your most common expressions because of my home town!

5. I graduated from the Ichabod Crane High School in Valatie, New York. (Yes, I have a diploma from a school named after a fictional character.) Washington Irving hung out with various people in the Valatie/Kinderhook area–including Martin Van Buren. Our school was named for his famous story, and our mascot was the Rider. On the wall of our auditorium were silhouettes of Ichabod Crane riding a horse on one side and the headless horseman chasing him on the other.

6. War movies are my guilty pleasure. I don’t mind if they’re bloody, as long as the heroes are noble. And it is kind of cool when things explode. I grew up watching John Wayne movies on Saturday afternoons with my dad. My favorites were The Green Berets and The Sands of Iwo Jima. Even today, I watch Band of Brothers and Saving Private Ryan every time they’re on the History Channel.  (Note: Some folks I know have purported to be war movie fans based on their love of Pearl Harbor. Seriously? That is a chick flick–not a true war movie!)

7. I remember exactly where I was when the US Hockey team won the 1980 Olympics of Lake Placid, NY. I was in the stands at a basketball game at my college. The announcer stopped the game to tell us the news, and we all cheered. Have you seen the movie version of their story–Miracle? It’s a great one!

Part III: Some sweet bloggers whose sites I enjoy. There’s not room here to describe each blog in detail. Feel free to come back when you have more time so you can pop in on a site or two. (And if you’re one of the bloggers below, please don’t link back to me. That’s not why I’m mentioning you!)

  1. Julia at Dark Glass Ponderings
  2. Laura Frantz at
  3. Lydia at The Overweight Bookshelf
  4. Esther at Laugh With Us Blog
  5. Alisa at Faith Imagined
  6. Patty Ann at Pitterle Postings
  7. Kerri at Living with Chronic Illness
  8. Tara at Living in Taradise
  9. Anne at Open Book Girls
  10. Cammie at Flutterbys and Frogs
  11. Erika at Raising (& Teaching) Little Saints
  12. Dorie at These Grace Filled Days
  13. Anne at Our Family on Mission
  14. Viviene at Journey of a Woman
  15. Kelly at Kelly’s Korner

If you’ve read this far, congratulations on making it through this long, long post!

Blog Sense

Renee Ann Smith —  October 11, 2010 — 1 Comment

Maybe some of you are interested in what’s going on in the blogging world, but you don’t have time to search it out for yourselves. If so, this post is for you! I’d like to bring to your attention some of the great reads and resources that are available through blogs. Take a few minutes to visit these sites. (If you’re reading this by e-mail, you’ll probably have to come to the site to follow these links, but you’ll be glad you did!)

Encouraging Readings
Follow this link to read God as My Restorer by Sharon Hinck.

This original fable by Max Lucado touched my heart. It’s a quick read. Follow this link to read Finding Father Benjamin: A Fable by Max Lucado.

Devotional Thoughts Combined with a Dash of History Follow this link for history buff Laura Frantz’s inspirational thoughts. (You can find her books here: The Frontiersman’s Daughter and Courting Morrow Little.)

Follow this link for author Sarah Sundin’s blog, which combines inspirational thoughts with a This Day in World War II section. (You can find her books here: A Distant Melody and A Memory Between Us)

Book Giveaways
Check out some of these great book giveaways. All you have to do is leave a comment to enter the various drawings.

Follow this link for The Amish Way: 10-Book Giveaway.

A high school senior named Carman keeps a list of Christian Book Giveaways on her blog of the same name. Follow this link to view the latest giveaways. (If you leave a comment on her main blog, tell her Renee Ann sent you!)

Free E-books
When I was looking up an old devotional I remembered enjoying, I found it at Follow this link to browse a site filled with many categories of e-books, which you can download for free.

All Giveaways
The internet is filled with other great giveaways. Follow this link to browse Giveaway Scout, a site which list giveaways in various categories, such as fashion, home & garden, jewelry, and, of course, books.