Monday, July 30, 2012

White Knight

Welcome Staci! What a great story you've brought to us, and I understand this is Book #2 from your Courage Series. I love the fact that your writing is always different, no two the same - and heroes...there's nothing like 'em.

I hope you don't mind, Staci, but I love what you said about White Knights and just have to share it!

One of the things I really love about this book and the whole series is the friendships that are formed.  I have a group of friends just like this.  Two of us became friends and the circle just kind of kept growing. You never know how it will grow next. 

I also love the concept of a "white knight."  A.J. doesn't set out to be that for Eve.  In fact, he's quietly trying to blend into the woodwork, but the relationship these two have nearly from the start is just so great.  They can just be together. They can have fun simply being in each other's company. It's not about great dates or impressing each other.  It's just being who they really are and loving and helping one another through the tough spots of life.

Sometimes white knights can look tough on the outside, but I think we ladies need to realize that may not be all there is to the story.  Life can really be hard on a white knight who is trying to do what's right but who doesn't know exactly what that is or how to do it.  And even white knights need a safe place to fall sometimes.

In short, I love this story, and I think you will too!

Well, I certainly did! Here's a peek:

Hoping for some excitement and a little extra money, A.J. Knight signed up to be a Houston EMT. However, when he did, he never thought about the life-and-death situations he'd be put into or the lives that he might be called on to save. Worse, he never so much as considered the lives that might be lost while he was working to save them. 

Eve Knox understands what it's like to have life ripped away in an instant. After the death of her first and only love in an unimaginable tragedy, she is struggling to go on with a life that seems to have been stripped of its former meaning. Hurting and alone, Eve knows her friends are just trying to help her cope, but their attempts to fill the void in her heart are starting to smother the spirit she once had. She sees no point in searching for love a second time, what happens when a second-chance love shows up in a way she never saw coming...


Keeping an eye on her little silver Celica wasn’t all that much of a problem. It, like her, shone like a brilliant supernova under every light it flashed through. A.J. retraced his mind through the night. They were fun—all of them. He liked hanging out with them. Even though he hadn’t been a charter member of their little group, it seemed like he had been accepted with no questions. A smile broke onto his face as Gabe and Dante’s jabs at each other floated through his mind. And even Ashley and Lisa, who had initially seemed so intimidating, actually turned out to be nice.

Then there was Eve. He was glad for how her life seemed to be going, glad she had found Dante after the horrible year she had been through. Dante was perfect for her—classy, cultured. He could blend right into her life without so much as a misstep. They were perfect for each other, and A.J. was happy for them—for Dante, but more for Eve. She was one special person, and she deserved to be treated with the respect that Dante obviously held her in.

As his exit neared, A.J. considered simply hanging back and following her to her turn. Jeff’s admonition to make sure she was okay as they stood on the sidewalk flashed through A.J.’s mind, but then he remembered her obvious annoyance with Jeff’s concern. No, she would know if he didn’t turn off. So, he pushed the pedal to the floor and raced to catch up with her.

When his car was even with hers, he glanced over into her window. The light of her smile was shining as brightly as ever. With a slight wave and a smile, he told her goodnight through two car windows going 70 on the freeway and then backed off and crossed the lanes to take his turn off. “God, I guess you’re going to have to keep an eye on her the rest of the way.”

A.J. smiled at the thought. God, it seemed, had done a pretty good job of that to this point.

Somehow Eve had thought that A.J. would find a way to follow her all the way home. Not that she wanted him to of course, but somehow she figured Jeff had told him to. When the little brown car disappeared into the darkness off the ramp, Eve couldn’t help but feel more alone than she had all night. She ran a hand through her hair and reached over to turn up the radio. She was a big girl, just like she had told Jeff. Fun or no fun, she was a big girl who was now on her own. The problem was it felt far more like no fun than anything.


White Knight is a treasure to read! Ms. Stallings wraps you up in this group of friends as if they were your very own then you can't help but feel for each of them, but especially for Eve as she struggles to find the reason and will to truly move on after losing the love of her life and all of the dreams that they shared.

What Eve doesn't know is that AJ, the paramedic who manages to bring glimpses of joy to her shattered world, has a secret that could not only destroy their budding relationship, but also send her into an emotional tailspin she might never recover from. 

What a wonderful story! Ms. Stalling's characters are real people that you will laugh and cry with - and hope to meet again.

Now I have to go back and read the first story in this series!

Buy link:

A stay-at-home mom with a husband, three kids and a writing addiction on the side, Staci Stallings has numerous titles for readers to choose from. Not content to stay in one genre and write it to death, Staci’s stories run the gamut from young adult to adult, from motivational and inspirational to full-out Christian and back again. Every title is a new adventure! That’s what keeps Staci writing and you reading.

Where to find Staci:

Spirit Light Books--The Blog

Facebook Author Page at:

Staci's Ebook Romance Stories:

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Found in the Woods

Welcome back, LoRee! It's so nice to see a new story from the Frivolities series!  I admit this one caught me pleasantly unaware as everything was so wrapped up in the shop before that I wondered if this was really a part of the same stories. And then I got a little further in and you tied it all together and brought back that feeling of family taking care of family. Nice job!

So here's a peek...

Beth Phillips returns to Platteville, Nebraska in order to begin a new life and to hide from her abusive ex-husband. The secluded cabin offers a chance to stay hidden and to draw closer to God, but Beth quickly discovers she is not alone in the woods. She befriends a curious, displaced wolf, but instead of fearing the animal Beth finds comfort in his company. 

When field biologist, Aiden Holt, follows up on reported wolf sightings, he finds the animal and Beth Phillips. With emotional baggage of his own, Aiden usually prefers animals to people, but Beth's passion to keep the wolf draws Aiden in. Experience tells him the wolf needs relocation. His heart tells him he needs Beth Phillips. He camps nearby to capture the wolf, but can he capture Beth's heart, too? 

Two souls, each lost in their own way, are brought together by one of God's beautiful creations. Will the Lord's path to their destiny be found in the woods?


Had the Game and Parks guy really chased something, or someone, towards her cabin? Lord, if I’m
not alone out here, I need You more than ever. Be my shelter.

She paraded snatches of verses from Psalm 91through her memory. Beth believed He was her refuge. That He kept her sane. You will command angels to guard me.

Eventually, she relaxed and lay secure under theLord’s feathery wings.

And finally, she slept. Only to wake up to an earful of pounding heartbeat.

Not again.

A yowl broke through the deafening quiet of night.

Beth sat up at attention.

The mournful howl traveled down her spine and raised goose flesh.

A wolf? Really? So the guy did have a reason to be looking around.

She lay awake for a long time, listening. She imagined the howl called, "Hello, I’m here, come meet
me." No matter, it hung in the air, never wavering in clarity of sound. And eerie enough to dry Beth’s throat and draw her inward, while hairs on her arms stood on end.

The howl came again, this time rising and falling and ending as a question of sad, lonely sound. God
created magic when he made the wolf sing. The sinuous sound wove its way through the woods and
into the cabin. Beth found comfort in its music, soothed, rather than frightened by the unknown.

"Guess you were right, Mr. Game-and-Parks Guy." She hadn’t asked the stranger for his name. 


 Beth is so sweet, and the spiritual growth you see in her at every turn is a joy to behold. And the wolf...I love him! I can just imagine staring into his eyes the way she does. Their little dance made me laugh (you'll have to read it yourself). The beauty of the wildlife throughout the story is phenomenal.

And Aiden is such a tender soul. You can hear the longing, feel his need for God with every thought and every word. And his protectiveness over Beth is heartwarming.

What a wonderful story - the best one of the series yet!

The whole series can be found at:

A lifelong Nebraskan, LoRee Peery has lived most of her life in the country, where she feels grounded in her sense of place.  She learned to read when she was four and has devoured books since. She values one-on-one time with her grandchildren and loves time spent with other writers.
LoRee clings to the word overcomer and the knowledge she has victory in Jesus. When she considers being set apart as a child of God, she is humbled. She feels closest to the Lord when she worships through singing. And one thing she’s sure of: “Jesus loves me, this I know. And He will never let me go.”

For more about LoRee, go to:

Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Unraveling of Wentwater

Once again I've been lead into the world of inspirational fantasy. Take a peek at  The Unraveling of Wentwater and learn some of the great truths that sneak into this wonderful story.

This story explores love, jealousy, mercy, and judgment. It spins a tale about the power and magic of words, and as the marsh witch, who keeps words in a jar, warns, “Be careful with your words, they have consequences!” Secrets and superstitions abound in the kingdom, but only a water creature who lives at the bottom of the lake and guards the sacred site knows the truth and can help Teralyn restore all.

In this fourth installment of The Gates of Heaven fantasy series, readers will learn of the fourth of seven sacred sites heaven set up on earth to prevent evil from gaining a stronghold over the hearts of men. Inspired by the traditional fairy tale Sleeping Beauty, readers will be taken on a journey that will leave them, in a word...speechless.


When the simple, backward village of Wentwater begins disappearing one word at a time, no one can figure out how to stop it. Not the learned men living up in the Heights nor the superstitious leaders of the village. But those who had attended the baby naming ceremony seventeen years earlier remember the words of the marsh witch, and her pronouncement that the babe would one day cause the unraveling of Wentwater. In their fear, the villagers banish the parents and set their cottage on fire, and the babe was thought to have perished in the flames. But . . . did she?

Teralyn lives in the Heights and wants nothing more than to create beautiful music on her lap harp. When she comes down to the village for a festival, she falls in love with a villager named Fromer, much to the fury of Fromer’s brother, Justyn. Justyn’s jealousy moves him to make a deal with the witch, and when Wentwater vanishes due to a backfiring spell, it leaves Teralyn, the only person left in the kingdom, with a terrible choice. She must leave her life and forget Wentwater, or she can spend seven long years restoring everything back to the way it was, by spinning nettle into thread and stitching the world back . . . one word at a time.


“This child will be the undoing of Wentwater. Before she turns eighteen, the village will unravel and all will be lost.” She searched the room, peering over heads, until her eyes lit upon a spinning wheel in the corner. “I see the thread of life tangling, her fingers spinning the spindle, stitching with thread, thumbs bleeding as she sits at the wheel, undoing, undoing . . .”

She cast a sideways glance at Arlynna, whose voice had fled the room. “You must send the
mother away. And the babe . . .”

Ursell reached down and, with something akin to tenderness, stroked the child’s forehead. Iris
grabbed the doorjamb to keep from fainting. She strained to hear the witch’s words, which came out
barely above a whisper. “. . . must be put to death. Before Wentwater comes to naught.”

Ursell’s words dropped like stones into a deep waterless well, rebounding off the walls of the
room and draining hope from the hearts of all in attendance. As the witch pushed through the mob of
women and disappeared from Iris’s view, chaos erupted. Voices unleashed gave vent to fear and
hysteria. Arlynna stepped over the voices around her and summoned attention.

“There is little time. We must act quickly!” With her eyes, she signaled to the two older women who had blessed the babe. They grasped Dineen’s arms, one on each side, as she protested and
wriggled to get away. Cries rose up in a chant to Iris’s ears, although her own voice still wandered lost in the stifling room. A whirlwind of irrepressible fury howled through the hallway.

“Banish her! Banish her!”

Iris watched as more women latched on to Dineen, as another scooped up the babe from the
cradle, as Dineen flailed for her child, her agonizing screams melting Iris’s heart. But Iris knew there
was nothing to be done, no way to stem this tide that must rush in and sweep away such a curse. If the
babe was indeed destined to bring destruction to Wentwater, who were they to ignore such warning?
Iris didn’t allow herself to think of the pain and terror the new mother must be feeling. Never in her
own life had she witnessed such portentous omens. Had Ursell seen the future in her glass eye—or was it her malevolence and bitterness at her own banishment that had drawn her from her marsh and set her feet toward the village? Iris would never know. And she gave herself no time to ponder such
inscrutable thoughts.

A voice yelled. “Burn that spinning wheel!” Another cried, “Burn down the cottage, burn


Like fairy tales of old, this is a wonderful story full of the great truths of the ages. If you enjoy fantasy, you will love falling into this tale.

For a chance to win a copy, go to:

For more info. about C.S. Lakin and her other stories go to: 

Saturday, July 7, 2012

The Blessing Seer

Woohoo! A new author has arrived in the Pelican's flock. And it seems this story is one close to all our hearts - how unworthy we all are of His blessings and how He can use these poor, broken vessels.


 When God sends Addy a special messenger who challenges her to step from her comfort zone, she isn’t sure she’s up to the job. She feels inadequate to take on the task of encouraging others, and when she starts seeing visions, she worries she’s losing her mind.

Yet, Addy wants only to be used by God, even if that means seeing visions and risking relationships with family and friends. By stepping out on a limb, can Addy really accomplish something significant for God? What affect will her surrender to His will have on those around her? And what affect will it have on her own life?

Includes a bible study


Because I’m the pastor’s wife, I know people expect me to know about all things spiritual. I’m sure they assume I could skip Sunday sermons altogether. I don’t need them, right? Wrong! I’m human. I still struggle in my relationship with God. I fail Him. I don’t understand everything. I have to pray and study. In fact, I often feel inadequate to fill the role of a pastor’s wife. Should I know more? Should I be more spiritual? Should I be able to answer any biblical question?

As mentioned in the sermon, I have always sung about counting my blessings. I’ve heard people say, “God bless you.” But, have I really contemplated this topic? Not really. I knew God wanted to teach me something because I couldn’t let it go.

“You know, I’ve heard it told that God has a whole storehouse of blessings to bestow, but many are never received.”

I halted in my tracks, at first wondering if the voice came from inside my head. But, no, a man of medium build stood beside me as if he had been there all along. His eyes glimmered with a most alluring shade of azure akin to the morning sky. His gray-white hair and beard hinted at elderly, yet he appeared quite fit and sprightly.

I hesitated then I extended my hand.

“I’m sorry. I don’t believe I’ve had the pleasure. I’m Addy Townsend.” I was actually “fishing” when I said this. I didn’t know who this man was or where he had come from. He didn’t favor the man I had seen earlier in the car. I definitely had no idea why he had immediately begun to discuss the very topic that buzzed in my head. And in this day and time, should I be running from him?

When he placed his hand in my outstretched one, words failed to express the feeling. As odd as it may sound to even my ears, his touch radiated peace like a warmth that rushed from his hand throughout my body and calmed my restlessness. I sensed no need to flee.

“Name’s Conrad.”

“Nice to meet you, Conrad. I’ve never seen you around here. Have you recently moved into the neighborhood?”

“No, just passing through.”

“I see.”

He began to stroll once again, and I fell into step beside him. It felt familiar, as if I had taken this walk with him on numerous occasions. I started to engage in friendly conversation by commenting on the weather or leaves, but I never had the opportunity. He launched the conversation himself.

“Blessings are often contingent on obedience.”

I contemplated that a moment. I considered what I knew from Scripture about the topic of blessing.

“I suppose you’re right, at least historically speaking. I mean, God promised blessing to the Israelites if they would obey.”

“That’s right, Addy, He did.”

His face beamed as if he were proud I had answered correctly, and I smiled for his words to me brimmed with compliment. The ease of conversation with a stranger surprised me. Normally, I would only engage in such dialogue with those closest to me, and admittedly, possibly not even then.

“There are blessings God gives because He is a gracious God.” Conrad continued. “However, there are blessings He waits to give if only the person will obey or follow His will.”

“Yes, He definitely blesses us with much we don’t deserve.”

“It is His very nature.” He stated this in a most matter-of-fact manner.

“But, if there are blessings we could receive based on obeying or following His will, then what you said must be true—there are blessings we never receive because we aren’t obedient or devoted to following His way.”

He stopped and looked at me. His eyes brimmed with compassion. His expression and posture exuded sorrow. “Yes.” His voice was low, and I thought a tear might emerge for the deep emotion I sensed from him.

Silence ensued. I felt the need to cease the intensity of the moment.

“It’s a shame that we would miss out on God’s blessings. If only we knew what God was up to.”

Now Conrad’s eyes seemed to look to my very soul. My pulse quickened. I bit my lip and began to fidget.

“If you knew the blessings God had in store for others, would you tell them?”

“I suppose I would….yes.”

As the words left my mouth, I knew my tone sounded unsure. I diverted my gaze from his, but my thoughts were still riveted on his question. Would I tell someone if I knew the blessing he or she could obtain? I have trouble just sharing my faith with those around me. In fact, I’m not much of a conversationalist about anything.

“Addy.” The way he said my name was so soothing. There was no condemnation for my unconfident answer to his question.

I looked back at him when he addressed me.

“Addy, you are not alone in lacking confidence. There are many who keep silent when they should speak. Just remember if you are yielded to Him, He will guide you. He will give you the words to say.”

He placed his hand on my shoulder. “Do not fear. You can.”

He then turned and strolled down the street. I wanted to say something, but no words would come, and I realized I had arrived back in front of my house. I glanced once more at Conrad’s back. He appeared smaller and smaller—fading into the colorful scenery. I wanted to wait to see which way he would go but had no time to waste. I needed to jump in the shower.

I haven't had a chance to read this one yet, but it sounds like a blessing in itself. And a bible study to boot? I can't wait!!!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Women and heart attacks

Thank God this woman, who is a nurse, could explain exactly what she went through when she had her heart attack. And no - it doesn't sound like a "normal" heart attack, but that's because we've all learned what a man's heart attack is like and we assume that it will be the same for a woman...but it's not.


I am an ER nurse and this is the best description of this event that I have ever heard. Please read, pay attention, and send it on!


I was aware that female heart attacks are different, but this is the best description I've ever read.

Women rarely have the same dramatic symptoms that men have ... you know, the sudden stabbing pain in the chest, the cold sweat, grabbing the chest & dropping to the floor that we see in movies. Here is the story of one woman's experience with a heart attack.

I had a heart attack at about 10:30 PM with NO prior exertion, NO prior emotional trauma that one would suspect might have brought it on. I was sitting all snugly & warm on a cold evening, with my purring cat in my lap, reading an interesting story my friend had sent me, and actually thinking, 'A-A-h, this is the life, all cozy and warm in my soft, cushy Lazy Boy with my feet propped up.

A moment later, I felt that awful sensation of indigestion, when you've been in a hurry and grabbed a bite of sandwich and washed it down with a dash of water, and that hurried bite seems to feel like you've swallowed a golf ball going down the esophagus in slow motion and it is most uncomfortable. You realize you shouldn't have gulped it down so fast and needed to chew it more thoroughly and this time drink a glass of water to hasten its progress down to the stomach. This was my initial sensation--the only trouble was that I hadn't taken a bite of anything since about 5:00 p.m.

After it seemed to subside, the next sensation was like little squeezing motions that seemed to be racing up my SPINE (hind-sight, it was probably my aorta spasms), gaining speed as they continued racing up and under my sternum (breast bone, where one presses rhythmically when administering CPR).

This fascinating process continued on into my throat and branched out into both jaws. 'AHA!! NOW I stopped puzzling about what was happening -- we all have read and/or heard about pain in the jaws being one of the signals of an MI happening, haven't we? I said aloud to myself and the cat, Dear God, I think I'm having a heart attack!

I lowered the foot rest dumping the cat from my lap, started to take a step and fell on the floor instead. I thought to myself, If this is a heart attack, I shouldn't be walking into the next room where the phone is or anywhere else... but, on the other hand, if I don't, nobody will know that I need help, and if I wait any longer I may not be able to get up in a moment.

I pulled myself up with the arms of the chair, walked slowly into the next room and dialed the Paramedics... I told her I thought I was having a heart attack due to the pressure building under the sternum and radiating into my jaws. I didn't feel hysterical or afraid, just stating the facts. She said she was sending the Paramedics over immediately, asked if the front door was near to me, and if so, to un-bolt the door and then lie down on the floor where they could see me when they came in.

I unlocked the door and then laid down on the floor as instructed and lost consciousness, as I don't remember the medics coming in, their examination, lifting me onto a gurney or getting me into their ambulance, or hearing the call they made to St. Jude ER on the way, but I did briefly awaken when we arrived and saw that the radiologist was already there in his surgical blues and cap, helping the medics pull my stretcher out of the ambulance. He was bending over me asking questions (probably something like 'Have you taken any medications?') but I couldn't make my mind interpret what he was saying, or form an answer, and nodded off again, not waking up until the Cardiologist and partner had already threaded the teeny angiogram balloon up my femoral artery into the aorta and into my heart where they installed 2 side by side stints to hold open my right coronary artery.

I know it sounds like all my thinking and actions at home must have taken at least 20-30 minutes before calling the paramedics, but actually it took perhaps 4-5 minutes before the call, and both the fire station and St Jude are only minutes away from my home, and my Cardiologist was already to go to the OR in his scrubs and get going on restarting my heart (which had stopped somewhere between my arrival and the procedure) and installing the stints.
Why have I written all of this to you with so much detail? Because I want all of you who are so important in my life to know what I learned first hand.

1. Be aware that something very different is happening in your body, not the usual men's symptoms but inexplicable things happening (until my sternum and jaws got into the act). It is said that many more women than men die of their first (and last) MI because they didn't know they were having one and commonly mistake it as indigestion, take some Maalox or other anti-heartburn preparation and go to bed, hoping they'll feel better in the morning when they wake up... which doesn't happen. My female friends, your symptoms might not be exactly like mine, so I advise you to call the Paramedics if ANYTHING is unpleasantly happening that you've not felt before. It is better to have a 'false alarm' visitation than to risk your life guessing what it might be!

2. Note that I said 'Call the Paramedics.' And if you can take an aspirin. Ladies, TIME IS OF THE ESSENCE!

Do NOT try to drive yourself to the ER - you are a hazard to others on the road.

Do NOT have your panicked husband who will be speeding and looking anxiously at what's happening with you instead of the road.

Do NOT call your doctor -- he doesn't know where you live and if it's at night you won't reach him anyway, and if it's daytime, his assistants (or answering service) will tell you to call the Paramedics. He doesn't carry the equipment in his car that you need to be saved! The Paramedics do, principally OXYGEN that you need ASAP. Your Dr will be notified later.

3. Don't assume it couldn't be a heart attack because you have a normal cholesterol count. Research has discovered that a cholesterol elevated reading is rarely the cause of an MI (unless it's unbelievably high and/or accompanied by high blood pressure). MIs are usually caused by long-term stress and inflammation in the body, which dumps all sorts of deadly hormones into your system to sludge things up in there. Pain in the jaw can wake you from a sound sleep. Let's be careful and be aware. The more we know the better chance we could survive.

A cardiologist says if everyone who gets this mail sends it to 10 people, you can be sure that we'll save at least one life.

*Please be a true friend and send this article to all your friends (male & female) who you care about!*

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy Independence Day!

"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses
yearning to breathe free,
the wretched refuse of your teeming shore. 
Send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me. 
I lift my lamp beside the golden door."

This country has been greatly blessed over the years, known as the land where people could find freedom. Let us not forget our roots and why this country was established - and why we have been indeed so nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all!

May God bless all those who are or who have served...let freedom reign!

Happy Independence Day!

God Bless America!