Thursday, August 26, 2021

Virtual Book Tour + #Giveaway: Christmas Comes to Morning Star by Charlotte Hubbard @GoddessFish


 

Christmas Comes to Morning Star

by Charlotte Hubbard

GENRE: Amish, Inspirational Romance


BLURB:


Founded by five unmarried and enterprising Amish maidels, the new Morning Star Marketplace in small-town Missouri is preparing for a joyous Christmas season. But will the holiday also bring
unexpected tidings of love?

Twin sisters Molly and Marietta Helfing are eagerly anticipating Christmas, with Marietta fully recovered from cancer and their noodle making business thriving. But Molly clearly misses having former tenant Pete Shetler and his rambunctious dog, Riley, around. Marietta can’t ignore Molly’s feelings for Pete—or the anxiety it stirs within her. Convinced her illness has made her unmarriageable, Marietta wonders what kind of life she’ll have if her sister marries—despite Molly’s promise never to leave her behind. . .

Then a fire destroys the home of Amish neighbors and Molly and Marietta graciously make room for widower Glenn Detweiler, his dat, and his two young boys. When Pete returns to help the family rebuild, Molly relishes her reunion with the handsome carpenter, while Marietta delights in mothering Glenn’s boys—and is surprised by her poignant bond with their quiet, brooding father. Soon everyone is wondering if this season will bring the blessing of a merry double wedding to Morning Star . . .


Excerpt:

I like that smile on your face, Jo. You’re happiest when you’re baking, ain’t so?”

Jo’s stomach fluttered when Michael stepped into her shop. His evergreen wreath suggested that he had something other than flirtation in mind, and that was just as well, wasn’t it? “That fresh wreath smells just like Christmas,” she said. “I suppose you and your dat make those at your Queen City greenhouse, jah?”

We do,” Michael replied. “And we’ve brought enough of them to hang on everyone’s shop entry for the holiday season.”

Jo stopped stirring her frosting to gaze at him. “That’s very generous. “You fellows have gone all out to decorate The Marketplace for us, and I really appreciate it.”

The blush that tinted Michael’s cheeks told Jo that he felt every bit as shy around her as she was near him.

It’s been a boon to our nursery business, selling our plants here,” he said with a dimpled smile. “But more than that, Dat and I, well—we’ve really enjoyed coming to Morning Star to spend time with you and your mamm. And—and my invitation to come to Queen City and see our greenhouses full of poinsettias still stands.”

Jo swallowed hard. How many times had she dreamed of taking Michael up on his offer? “I—we’ll see,” she hedged. “Baking for the Christmas season is keeping me busier this year—”

But if you can spare a couple of weekdays in early December, the sight of all those bright red poinsettias will take your breath away,” Michael insisted.

Jo’s heart was pounding so hard that Michael could probably hear it. What a joy it would be see those greenhouses filled with such vibrant Christmas flowers.

As she once again noticed how slim and attractive he was, however, Jo was even more aware that she probably outweighed him by thirty pounds. A guy like Michael would never see beyond her thick glasses—and even though he’d never met her deceased dat, there was no getting around the fact that Jo had been created in Joseph Fussner’s image.


Interview with Charlotte Hubbard

What made you want to become a writer?

Even as a kid, I was scribbling stories and that never went away as I got older! In the early 80’s, when I’d been a school librarian for a while, a student’s death inspired me to write a story and submit it to True Love, a confession magazine—and it sold! From there, I sold several more stories to the confession mags and graduated into full-length fiction to publish my first book in 1991.


What inspired you to write CHRISTMAS COMES TO MORNING STAR?

Well, I write these Amish romances in series, and I’d already completed #1 MORNING STAR, and #2 FIRST LIGHT IN MORNING STAR, so this Christmas story was next! It’s a double romance because the heroines are twin sisters (who, like the other heroines of this Maidels of Morning Star series, believe they’ll never marry).

In this case, Marietta Helfing has had a double mastectomy and believes no man would ever want “damaged goods”—and Molly has sworn to remain single so Marietta will never be alone. Luckily, Pete Shetler and Glenn Detweiler each need these young women in their lives, and the Christmas season provides a backdrop for the two love stories.


Can you tell us a little bit about the characters in CHRISTMAS COMES TO MORNING STAR?

The Helfing twins, Molly and Marietta, run a homemade noodle shop in The Marketplace, the converted barn that’s home to many Amish crafters in this series. Their noodle factory is behind their home, and the shop is so successful they’ve had Pete Shetler expand it so they can increase production. Pete has a secret crush on Molly—but because she’s sworn never to marry (see above) and can’t take Pete seriously, because he hasn’t joined the Amish church, he fears he’ll spend the rest of his life with Riley, his boisterous Golden retriever.

Glenn Detweiler, who makes wooden toys and birch chairs to sell in his Marketplace shop, is having a run of difficult luck: in a very short time he loses his wife, his mother, and his house burns down. When he, his father, and two sons move in with the Helfings, he dares to believe that Marietta might be the woman who can turn his life around.


You know I think we all have a favorite author. Who is your favorite author and why?

I have two favorites right now, which means I’m waiting eagerly each time they have new books coming out, and I’m far enough along in their series that I’m willing to buy hardbacks rather than wait for the paper editions to come out! I really love Linda Castillo’s thrillers about Police Chief Kate Burkholder (who left the Amish to become a cop!). I’ve also become engrossed in Rhys Bowen’s historical mysteries—have read all of her Royal Spyness books (about a penniless young royal, 34th in line for the throne, who spies for the Queen) and am working my way through her Molly Murphy series, about a gal who escapes a murder rap in Ireland to live in NYC in the early 19th century.


Can you tell us a little bit about your next books or what you have planned for the future?

Now that I’ve completed the 4 Maidels books (#4, LOVE BLOOMS IN MORNING STAR, is out in 2022), I’m back to writing the popular Promise Lodge series! #6 FAMILY GATHERINGS AT PROMISE LODGE is completed and #7 HIDDEN AWAY AT PROMISE LODGE is my next project. Both are scheduled for 2023. Meanwhile, I’m about to finish a novella for a Christmas anthology, AN AMISH CHRISTMAS STAR, which comes out in the fall of 2022. My story is called “Star of Wonder.”


What did you enjoy most about writing this book?

I always love writing Christmas stories! It was also a gratifying challenge to write about Glenn’s traumatic losses in a way I hope will inspire readers rather than bringing them down. It’s always a joy when an entire Amish community rallies to help a member, and in this story Glenn is the recipient of some jaw-dropping generosity. It was also fun to write Glenn’s little boy, Billy Jay, as he participates in the Christmas Eve program at school, and it was just funny to write Pete Shetler and his rowdy Golden retriever, Riley, as they try very hard to win Molly’s love.




AUTHOR Bio and Links:

In 1983, Charlotte Hubbard sold her first story to True Story. She wrote around 70 of those confession stories, and she’s sold more than 50 books to traditional or online publishers. A longtime resident of Missouri, she’s currently writing Amish romances set in imaginary Missouri towns for Kensington. She now lives in Omaha, NE with her husband of 40+ years and their Border collie, Vera.

Website ~ Facebook


Buy Links:


Ebook:


Kindle •• Kobo •• Google Play


Print:


Target •• The Book Depository •• Walmart


Amazon •• Amazon UK •• Amazon Canada •• Barnes & Noble


Books-A-Million •• Chapters Indigo •• IndieBound •• Kensington


Giveaway:

$15 Amazon/BN GC




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