Thursday, July 6, 2017

Blog Tour Review & Giveaway: Season of Hope by Sara Jane Jacobs

~Don't forget to enter the GIVEAWAY below!~

When Amanda Jarvis prays that a special friend will move into the vacant house near her isolated mountain home, she isn't upset when God sends a boy instead of a girl. But Amanda's not the only one receiving unexpected answers to her prayers. After fleeing with his mother from an abusive father, Tyler Armstrong finds much-needed love and acceptance with Amanda's family over the next ten years.

As high school graduation nears, Tyler is shocked when one carefree afternoon with Amanda churns up an inner turmoil he would have never imagined; he's crushing on his best friend. And for the first time in his life he's hiding a secret from Amanda. Convinced the timing is all wrong, Tyler pushes his feelings aside as he and Amanda prepare for the future. He will soon begin training to pursue his dream of becoming a Navy SEAL, while Amanda makes plans to spend the summer in Manhattan with her aunt and then return home to the community college.

When Amanda's summer job catapults her into a modeling career, she readily accepts the much-needed distraction. Tyler's impending deployment is turning her world upside down. Along with the fact that she's falling for her best friend. And, for the first time in her relationship with Tyler, she's hiding a secret, too.

Phoebe Garrison, Amanda's controlling aunt, is thrilled when she is given the power to act on behalf of her underage niece. Bored with her Fortune 500 advertising agency, becoming Amanda's manager is just what she's been looking for to rekindle her aspirations. But as Tyler becomes aware of Phoebe's obsession to push Amanda into supermodel status, tensions rise. As the three of them become entangled in a mass of concealed ambition and desire, each will make decisions that will send ripples of turbulence across their futures.

BOOK LINKS: Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Smashwords

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Book Excerpt

“Why do you want to date?” Tyler’s confused look was not an act.
“I didn’t say I wanted to date. Debbie’s question just got me thinking.That’s all.” She studied Tyler. “Don’t you think you’re going to want to ask girls out on a date?”
“Not anytime soon,” he mumbled, reaching for his glass of sweet tea.
“Why don’t you both just focus on school?” Ethan suggested. “Sounds good to me,” Tyler agreed. “In fact, AJ, I say we make a pact to bypass the high school dating distraction. Let’s focus on school and have a little race to the top of the class.”
“Deal.” Amanda wasn’t about to pass up a challenge.
Ethan smiled across at both of them. “I’m glad that’s settled.”
Tyler concentrated on buttering his biscuits. “If I want to become a Navy SEAL I won’t have time for dating anyway,” he remarked.
His comment caught Ethan by surprise. “I didn’t know you were interested in becoming a SEAL, Tyler.”
“Yessir.” Tyler gave the man an unpretentious nod. “And I read that you should go out for as many sports teams as you can in high school since you have to be in top physical condition to become a SEAL.” He directed his next comment at Amanda. “And if I’m going to beat you to the top of the class and stay focused on getting into shape, I won’t have time for female drama.”
Tyler’s words evoked a smile from Amanda’s father. Glancing over at his wife, he caught her unamused look and quickly removed the smirk, turning back to commend the lad and deliver a surprise. “Hey, Tyler?” The boy looked up from his fork full of mashed potatoes and gravy. “That’s a very noble goal. You’re going to need some experience with a gun, too. I’ve already talked with your mother about taking you hunting this year, and she okayed it. Are you interested?”
“You bet I am!” Tyler’s enthusiasm was almost palpable.
Ethan was more than satisfied with his reaction. “Awesome. We’ll start making preparations for a fall hunting trip then.”
Amanda looked at Tyler, disappointment and worry twisting her innocent face. “You’re gonna kill a deer?”
“It’s food, AJ,” he said in his defense.
“They’re living, breathing creatures. I hate that people kill them.”
Tyler looked puzzled. “But you still eat the meat.”
“I don’t like to think about it, though. Just don’t show me any pictures.”
Ethan, seeing his wife’s pleading look, intervened. “Okay. Let’s change the subject before the girls lose their appetites.” He reached for his wife’s hand and gave it a gentle squeeze. “Amanda gets that tender heart of hers from her mother. Tyler and I will keep our hunting stories to ourselves.”
“Thank you,” Amanda said, relieved. “Pass the chicken, please.”
Tyler grinned. “You know, Amanda, that chicken used to be a—”
“Uh, Tyler,” Ethan interrupted. “Just pass Amanda the chicken.”

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Season of Hope by Sara Jane Jacobs
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed reading this coming of age story about a boy and a girl who become best friends and how their life unfolds into young adulthood.  I felt like the book was a little stilted to began with but then it smoothed out for the most part.  I loved the description of the little girl who was so desperate for a best friend and how she prayed that God would send one to live next door.  When it turned out to be a boy instead of a girl, she accepted it and him with an open heart.  They form a strong bond that is heart warming to read about.  They often encourage and challenge each other to be a better person.   Both families were a delight to read about - especially the steadfast marriage of Amanda's mom and dad and the dedication of Tyler's single mom.

There was a little bit of time jumping that was a little jarring because of the years this book spans.  I felt this could have been made clearer with some indication at the beginning of the chapters.   Also, I was not expecting the way the book ended abruptly.  Obviously there is going to be a sequel, which I will definitely want to read!

*I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not paid or required to write a positive review and all opinions stated are my own.*

View all my reviews on Goodreads

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I began writing as a hobby while raising my two children. In 2015, I dusted off my stories and my dreams to see if I could turn my hobby into a career. My first story, Season of Hope, was inspired by summer vacations which always included a trip to Franklin, North Carolina, to visit family and explore The Smoky Mountains. When I'm not writing, I enjoy spending time with family. I love most any activity that involves being outdoors, especially camping, hiking and spontaneous excursions to splash in the ocean. I currently live along the Emerald Coast of Florida with my cat Selah and her delightful offspring, Colby, Jack and Tuesday


Author Q&A

1. Where is one place you want to visit that you haven’t been before?
Paris! In book two of this series, Amanda moves to Paris for a year. Writing about her apartment, her view of the Eiffel Tower and all the places near her new home made me want to go and see them all!

2. What inspires you?
A brand-new day, a good movie, when my family gets together for a family event, certain songs, the night sky, riding with my windows down (especially at dusk), fog, those moments just before a storm rolls in. That’s the short, off-the-top-of-my-head list.

3. Name a favorite fictional character and tell us why?
Anne Shirley of Anne of Green Gables, written by Lucy Maud Montgomery (as if I really had to add the title and author) Maybe it’s just the way Megan Follows brought her to life. She’s such an interesting character, always with one foot in the real world and one in her imaginary world. It’s so much fun in that place she lives, where the two worlds overlap.

4. Where do you get your ideas?
From a thought, mostly which can be triggered by a comment, a song or a quiet walk on the beach. It can really come from anywhere.

5. Do you ever experience writer’s block?
Ha-ha, maybe. I just don’t call it that I just think that it’s time to get outside, maybe go have a cup of coffee, or take a walk on the beach. I guess it’s a glass half full moment for me; a chance to take a break and go find some inspiration.

Enter to win the SEASON OF HOPE giveaway! One person will win the following items…

• A copy of the DVD, Sabrina (featured in the book)
• Costa Rican Tarrazu Dark Roast Coffee (a character’s favorite French Roast)
• An eBook of Season of Hope

Enter below!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

June 26 – Truthto Shine
June 27 ASC Book Reviews
June 28 Meagan Davenport
June 30 Barbara Brutt
July 4 Faithfully Bookish
July 7 Bookworm Mama
July 10 Tell the World
July 11 2014 and Beyond
July 12 Tammy Karasek
July 13 Rebecca DeMarino
July 14 –  Julie Arduini
July 17 Laura Bennet
July 18 All Betts Are Off
July 20 Rebecca Van Daniker
July 21 Leslie L. Mckee

This blog tour was coordinated by A Latte of Literature Blog Tour Services. Find out more: