Lyn Reviews Lori Oestreich’s Darling, All My Love

Darling, All My LoveDarling, All My Love by Lori Oestreich
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

A lovely debut novel by Lori Oestreich. I know Lori but this is my honest review of her book. In this 1930’s historical, she takes on the differences that separate people and lets love overcome the obstacles. What was really special to me was that the story is based on her grandparents’ real love story. Elegant prose and vivid descriptions. I look forward to her next novel!–Lyn

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Lyn Asks the March Question

My new series, “New Neighbor Lane” has a lot of pets in it, starting with a basset hound, Bummer, and two golden tabbies, Twinkie and Peanut Butter.

THE MARCH QUESTION: What was the name of your first pet? Tell us about how you came to have it and anything else you’d like to share!

My first pet was a gray, white and black striped domestic shorthair that my mother found for me. I don’t remember how she found him. I named Puddy Tat. You know why don’t you? Tweety Bird always said, “I t’ought I saw a puddy tat.” Remember Sylvester the Cat? My Puddy Tat was a great comfort to me as I went through grade school. And he was the cat who always climbed our Christmas tree. That was when people had glass ball ornaments! After the third time, my mom put a cup hook in the wall behind the Christmas tree and tied the tree to the wall. Problem solved. She loved animals and said trying to get a cat not to climb a tree–Impossible!

So please share your first pet story with me. (Some commenters will be offered a free ebook.)

And here’s a blast from the past-I only watched the first one. They go on and on!

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Lyn Asks the February Question-First Love?


Image by Amanda McConnell from Pixabay

My February Question is--What was your first love, I mean the “really” first one. I’m recalling my third grade crush at Glen Flora School. Oh, my, Benji had the cutest curly blond hair. And I knew he liked me because he would stand in line behind or in front of me. And he’d look at me and then fall straight the floor—not faint, just fall like a tree.

Oh, Mrs. Johnson didn’t like this! But I was so impressed. Fortunately Glen Flora was an older school and had wooden floors or Benji might have gotten a concussion all for love of me. ‘-) So please tell about that first crush. We could all use a smile, right?–Lyn (I randomly offer a free ebook to a few commenters.)

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Not Another Cover Model or Models?

Yes, I need help. For the first time I’m thinking of using a couple on a cover. This new series “New Neighbors Lane” revolves around a life-altering event for a family. Each story shows the characters helping Habitat for Humanity build their first house that they’ll own! The first book is titled “Amy’s Forever Love” and features a young single mom with twin girls. Add in the hero’s basset hound and two cute golden tabby kittens and you have a story I hope you’ll enjoy! It’s a winter in Wisconsin story so here are three couples I’ve chosen.








I’m always interested in why you choose 1,2, or 3. Again I’ll be gifting at least one commenter with a free ebook. So help me out and tell me what you REALLY think!–Lyn

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A Recipe That Made My Husband Nearly Dance with Joy! (And the January Question)

I know that chocolate chip cookies aren’t Christmasy–like gingerbread, spritz etc. Tell that to my husband!

A friend (author Roxanne Rustand) gave me this recipe, but then another friend served us vanilla-flavored chocolate chip cookies (made by adding a box of vanilla pudding mix) and that gave me an idea.

I added more vanilla to the original recipe and when he tasted it, my husband nearly danced aorund the kitchen. And then I decided to toast the pecans before adding them in. Toasting nuts brings out their natural oils and FLAVOR. Then my husband did dance around the kitchen! (kidding–he was too busy chomping!)

So if your husband is like mine and wants chocolate chips cookies for Christmas, this one’s for you!

Amazing Chocolate Chip Cookies

3 sticks butter, softened, no substitutions

1 cup white sugar

1 cup brown sugar

two eggs 

3 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt 

3 tablespoons vanilla (Yes, THREE—you won’t believe how this increases FLAVOR!)

2 cups milk chocolate chips 

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

2 cups pecan halves or pecan pieces (toasted in the oven first-this also amps up the flavor)

Preheat oven to 365°. Cream butter and sugars, then add eggs and vanilla; beat until fluffy. Add to dry ingredients and mix. Stir in chips and nuts. Drop by spoonfuls onto a greased cookie sheet. Bake 12 to 15 minutes till lightly browned. (Don’t over-bake.) If you like them crisper, smash them somewhat flat and bake at 375° for 15 minutes.

Now for the January Question: What’s January like in your neck of the woods? Happy there or not? (Aren’t you glad I didn’t ask you about new year’s resolutions, such as exercise, calories, etc?:-) Or do you have any funny Januray stories? Please share a few commenters will be randomly chose for a free ebook. Happy SWEET Christmas!–Lyn

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2020 Chritian Fiction Scavenger Hunt



FYI~ For completing this year’s scavenger hunt, the prizes (in USD, Amazon gift cards):

$350 first place

$250 second place

$150 third place

The contest runs from December 6-12.

However, the best prize each participant can “win” is finding new authors and books to read! 

My Book Info

A new deputy in town and a single mom, both with wounded hearts and with a puzzle to solve together–will love spark under the mistletoe? 

That’s a bit about my romance-mystery, Mistletoe and Sage. This holiday novella is book 5 in my Northern Intrigue series, set in the northwoods of Wisconsin where I live! (FYI~Each book is complete in itself, merely sharing some characters and setting.)

Deputy Sage Carey Dietz lost her first love and must now raise little Tucker alone. She’s forged a career in her hometown, joining the local sheriff’s department. In her low crime county, she is blindsided by a nasty act of vandalism.

Earlier this year Garrett Connolly thought he’d found a lasting love. Instead he left his home for a new start as a deputy sheriff in the northwoods.

Deputies Sage and Garrett find themselves working side by side to solve escalating vandalism. The target of the vandalism is what makes for a situation with high stakes. The nastiness is aimed at homes of the affluent new residents. These new residents provide so many needed jobs and fresh cash to their struggling rural county. Who is targeting the new homes? And perhaps making it unlikely others will come and build new houses near Steadfast?

On the personal side, can Sage feel love again? And is Garrett chancing a rebound romance? Welcome to Steadfast, Wisconsin, a town whose people and mysteries you may never forget. One reader said this exciting mystery romance had “characters who will feel like old friends by the end of the story!”

Every character I write becomes dear to me. But Sage possesses a rare spirit of always looking on the bright side, never letting the circumstances that surround her make her feel like less than she is or could achieve less than she could. A strong woman!

Now let’s begin this scavenger hunt! Go to Amazon by clicking this link. You will be taken to Mistletoe and Sage. Please click the Look Inside feature at the top of the book cover.

There find the answer to this question:

How many years did Sage live away from her hometown of Steadfast?

When you have the answer, click this link and fill out the form  and head on to the next blog!

Thank you so much for visiting! The next author on the tour is Jan Thompson, who is telling us all about her Christmas book WISH YOU JOY. You can find it 

Remember that you must answer every question from all 37 authors in this collection and that the round-robin will end on December 12th at 11:59 PM EST!

Enjoy your Christmas and happy reading!—Lyn Cote

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Lyn Reviews Vanetta Chapman’s Dead Wrong

Dead Wrong (Agatha's Amish B&B #1)Dead Wrong by Vannetta Chapman
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Dead wrong by Vanetta Chapman is a delightful murder mystery. Her characters are likable and realistic. The beautiful Texas Hill country is a wonderful setting and I loved the attitudes of the characters. Agatha Lapp inherits a B&B from her late brother. She is a good person, not a goody goody. There is a difference. I also liked her neighbor, retired detective Tony Vargas, again so believable, so human, so sympathetic. I enjoyed every part of Dead Wrong; it was not predictable. And I liked especially that at the end all the red herrings were explained. I don’t like it when dubious clues are left hanging. To me, that’s sloppy writing. So thank you, Vanetta, for another great read!-Lyn Cote

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Lyn Reviews Helen C Johannes’ Children’s Book

Frederick Fly-CatcherFrederick Fly-Catcher by Helen C. Johannes
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

If you’re looking for a whimsical fantasy to give that special child for the holiday-this book is for you!

In disclosure, I am a friend of the author, Helen C Johannes. (This is her first children’s book but she’s an award-winning author of fantasy romances for adults.) And I received a complimentary review copy. But this is my honest review.

First of all, I loved that Frederick is such a REAL frog! So many little details about a frog’s life and world are interwoven into this intriguing story. And this creates a great contrast for the moment that magic enters Frederick’s life!

A human tears into the swamp chased by more humans. AND EVERYONE KNOWS THAT HUMANS ARE TROUBLE!~

Before Frederick can blink his big eyes, he’s carried away into the human world–a castle even!
Of course, there is an evil sorcerer. Doesn’t every castle have one? ‘-)

I’m not going to give away the plot. What fun would that leave for you and the child you give this to or read this to?

It’s available in ebook and print.

My final comment: Not every frog becomes a prince but Frederick is a prince among frogs! See if you and that favorite child don’t agree!

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Click on cover below. Paid Link ONLY 99 CENTS EBOOK-LIMITED TIME!–Lyn

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Lyn Asks the December Question

I don’t think anyone can disagree that this is going to be an unusual holiday season, meaning Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s.

My December question: In this time of covid, what holiday traditions in your family and friends are you going to preserve?

Personally I’m going to keep the ones important to me. First of all, the Christmas tree. Always the start of our holiday. We’ll buy it after Thanksgiving and put it up in the living room where we can enjoy it.

Here’s one of our tree and I’m enjoying it with our two cats. We lost Tricksy, the black and white one, in August. RIP

GIFTS? A few mostly just little remembrances to open on Christmas morning. No children in our house to open gifts. But my sonin another state will send us photos of our granddaughter on Christmas morning.

And of course my nativity scene will adorn the fireplace mantel as always.

photo by

So you see I’m doing what I always do, yet I’m already planning my holidays to be safe but not lose my holiday spirit or those treasured traditions.

So what are you doing, keeping which traditions alive this year? Let’s encourage one another! Wishing you special Thanksgiving blessings-Lyn

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Lyn Reviews Charlotte MacLeod’s The Plain Old Man

The Plain Old Man (Kelling & Bittersohn, #6)The Plain Old Man by Charlotte MacLeod
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

At first I was overwhelmed by the many characters who were at Sarah’s Aunt Emma’s house to take part in the play. But then I realized it was me not Charlotte MacLeod, I was distracted. I started over and all was well. WHAT A MYSTERY! A huge oil painting of a Kelling ancestress goes missing. For various reasons Aunt Emma doesn’t want the police called in. But when one of the cast is found dead in his bathroom, events take a nasty turn. But Sarah and her fellow Kellings are up to the task! Seeing Sarah in hot pursuit literally of the bad guys was thrilling and a hoot at the same time.

Only Sarah Kelling Bittersohn would do this craziness! I did miss Max who was away on business in Europe. But this was an excellent who dun it. I love it when I don’t figure out the villain till the very end. And it wasn’t till the final pages that I twigged it. I enjoy current mysteries but sometimes I get tired of magical cats, recipes and heroines that get themselves into tight spots with a murderer and get beat up or almost killed. Charlotte MacLeod is different. And I love her (posthumously of course.)

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The Plain Old Man (Kelling & Bittersohn, #6) by Charlotte MacLeod | Goodreads

To purchase, click cover above. PAID LINK ( I make a few cents.)–Lyn

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