Friday, October 8, 2010

Virtual Book Party for Jody Hedlund!

Welcome! It's time to celebrate Jody Hedlund's debut novel, The Preacher's Bride!

If you aren't familiar with Jody Hedlund, I urge you to check out her fantastic blog and website. Besides writing inspirational historical romances, Jody shares excellent advice to writers on her blog. She's been an inspiration to me, and I'm thrilled to host this party!

Who is Jody Hedlund?

Jody is a mother of five who carves out time to write in between homeschooling her brood. If you follow Jody on Twitter, you'll soon find out that she's a nurturer. On more than one occasion, baby squirrels have dropped into her backyard, and each time Jody and her family fed them with an eye-dropper to give them a chance to survive. Let's just say she cares for everything that crosses her path.

Here is Jody (in the center) with her agent, Rachelle Gardner of WordServe Literary Agency and her editor at Bethany House Publishers, Dave Long. Photo courtesy of Keli Gwyn.

The Preacher's Bride

In 1650s England, a young Puritan maiden is on a mission to save the baby of her newly widowed preacher—whether her assistance is wanted or not.

Always ready to help those in need, Elizabeth ignores John’s protests of her aid. She’s even willing to risk her lone marriage prospect to help the little family.

Yet Elizabeth’s new role as housekeeper takes a dangerous turn when John’s boldness from the pulpit makes him a target of political and religious leaders. As the preacher’s enemies become desperate to silence him, they draw Elizabeth into a deadly web of deception. Finding herself in more danger than she ever bargained for, she’s more determined than ever to save the child—and man—she’s come to love.

Interested in purchasing this book? Photo is linked to Amazon page.

And now to the festivities! Take your pick from the buffet of delicious treats and don't forget to grab a beverage!

What are readers saying about Jody Hedlund and The Preacher's Bride?

Jaime Wright ofThe Jaime Reportssays:

"The Preachers Bride is a love story throbbing with emotion of thwarted love, a passion for grace, and homecoming that will forever imprint itself on the reader's heart. Jody Hedlund presents a debut novel that will never collect dust on a bookshelf."

Janna Qualman of Something She Wrote says:

"The Preacher's Bride is a beautiful book on the outside, and the content within its covers is a perfect match. Jody Hedlund gives us a heroine of strength alongside a hero of substance, wrapped together in a phenomenal story of intention and inspiration. I can think of no better package for this novel's message of standing up for what you believe."

Erica Vetsch of On the Write Path says:

"Congratulations on the release of The Preacher's Bride. I know you've been waiting for this day for what seems forever. I wish you all the best with this book and your writing career, and I can't wait to dive into reading The Preacher's Bride. God Bless!"

Wendy Miller of All in a Day's Thought says:

"The beginning hooked me. The middle swept me off my feet and the end left me with an overall feeling of contentment. Now that’s the definition of a good book."

Keli Gwyn of Romance Writers on the Journey says:

"I was thrilled to find Jody's book at my local Christian bookstore on September 10. I longed to drop everything and read it, but I was preparing to head to the American Christian Fiction Writers conference, so I tucked her book in my bag and read half of it en route to Indianapolis. I devoured the remainder the day I arrived, staying up until 1:30 a.m. in order to finish it because I couldn't put it down. Yes, it's that good! Jody's readers are in for a real treat."

Katie Ganshert of Katie Ganshert says:

"I knew Jody was a good writer from her blog, but I had no idea what kind of a story teller she'd be. After reading the Preacher's Bride, I can safely say she's a very talented one. I couldn't put her book down. Just ask my husband. I picked it up and didn't resurface for two two whole days (I even went on a walk with it!). And this coming from a gal who hardly ever reads historicals. The characters are memorable, the plot is gripping, and the message is so beautifully interwoven into the story that I can't imagine anybody would feel they're being preached at. Overall, it was a page-turner and an extraordinary debut novel! I can't wait to read The Doctor's Lady!!"

T. Anne Adams of White Platonic Dreams says:

"It's been a pleasure watching Jody progress on her writing journey. I remember celebrating with her when she got the call for representation, then shortly after a three book deal! What an amazing wild ride the Lord has taken her on. It has been such fun cheering her along. I can't wait to see what the future holds for her!"

Heather Sunseri of Balance with Purpose says:

"Jody knows how to bring characters to life. I cried when they cried, laughed
when they laughed, and craved the love John and Elizabeth felt for each other."

Jill Kemerer--wait, that's me!--says:

This book is miss-your-own-birthday-party good! Imagine my frustration when my husband and kids started singing "Happy Birthday" and I only had ten pages left! Ten pages! What can I say? This book left me breathless! And yes, I promptly blew out my candles, shoved a wad of chocolate cake in my mouth, and finished the book. My only problem? I didn't want the story to end!

If you're in the Toledo, Ohio area on Saturday, October 9, 2010, stop by Lifeway Christian Store in the Talmadge Road Shopping Center between 11:00 and 1:00. Jody will be signing copies of The Preacher's Bride.

Also, Jody has generously donated a signed copy to one lucky winner today! Simply leave a comment with your e-mail addy if you'd like to be entered in the drawing.
(Your e-mail address will not be used for any purpose other than to contact you for a mailing address in the case you are the winner.)

Offer void where prohibited. Must be a USA resident and 18 or older. Odds of winning vary due to the number of entrants.

Thank you, Jody, for letting me share this exciting event with you. And a huge thank you to all of the bloggers who contributed today.

I hope you all get a chance to read The Preacher's Bride, and mark your calendars next September for the release of Jody's second book, The Doctor's Lady.

Have a fantastic day!


  1. Woohoo! A party! I feel like such a butthead for not sening a picture in! Oh well. Celebrating with Jody! I shall provide the ice cream of course. Chocolate caramel brownie and I even brought Hershey Syrup, because you can never have too much chocolate!

  2. Katie, a butthead? That made me laugh!

    My mom gave me this recipe for this peanut butter cup, whipped cream, pudding, trifle dish thing, and let me just say... I'm bring that to the party. Only a true friend would introduce that to her other true friends!

    Congrats, Jody! I couldn't be more thrilled for you.

  3. Yeah, I'm beavis, then, Katie. B/c I didn't send one in either. But I love this. Everything about it. It feels so good to celebrate a friend. I directed people over here from my blog today for the party.

    And I'll take three of those coffee looking drinkie deals on the top right. Stat. :D
    ~ Wendy

  4. I haven't read it yet, but only because I'm trying to finish the edits on my MS! But my reward? READING THIS BOOK! It's on the top of my TBR pile, so I'm busting out these edits so I can enjoy it as soon as I'm finished. So excited for Jody! Great party, Jill! I will bring Pumpkin Stuff to the party - if you haven't tried it, YOU HAVE TO. It's a must for fall. You can find the recipe on my blog today, or Google it! :)

  5. Good morning!

    Katie: You aren't supposed to make me laugh that hard this early! And I'll take a double scoop of chocolate brownie caramel. Mm-mmm!

    Heather: Okay, I want that recipe! My mouth is watering...

    Wendy: Thanks, Wendy! And I'll slurp down the coffee dealies with you!

    Beth: Pumpkin Stuff? I'm guessing the "stuff" includes sugar and creaminess? I'm in!!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  6. A virtual party... what a great idea & a terrific way to support a friend. Congratulations to Jody on her book release!

  7. Been hearing lots about this book. And I'd love to have one of each of your goodies and then sit down to read The Preacher's Bride! Our local Christian bookstore is not carrying it (maybe not distributed in Canada yet?)? I'd be blessed to win a copy though. Wish me luck!

    lp(dot)lynnjdesigns (at) gmail (dot)

    Great party to start my Friday. Thanks Jill

  8. I just went back and read the small print! Always should remember the small print...ah well, I'll just have to wait a bit longer before reading! Great pictures of everyone too!!

  9. Wow!! What a party!! Thank you so much for throwing this big bash today, Jill!! I love the treats you're having!! I hope there will be enough left for everyone else after I devour my share! ;-)

    And thank you ALL for your super kind words about my book! You're all SO wonderfully supportive! I'm one blessed gal to have so many terrific friends!

  10. Congratulations, Jody! May you continue to have lots of success.

  11. Kelly: I had a blast putting it together! Thanks!

    Lynn: I loved this book! I hope the Canadian book stores get it pronto for you!!

    Jody: Aren't the treats yummy looking??

    CJ: I second that!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  12. Jill, you are a wonderful hostess and even better friend for throwing this bash for Jody. And the BEST part is that I could enjoy the treats without gaining an ounce. Fantastic.

    Jody, can't wait to meet you in person at the book signing in Toledo on Saturday.

  13. The coffee is great Jill! And yes, what a party!!! I'm so thrilled for Jody and cannot wait to read her next book. I get a sneak peak right Jody, right??? =)

  14. Congratulations to Jody! I'm a little over halfway through The Preacher's Bride. I've been using it to reward myself after I get my writing work done.

    Yay to Jill for hosting the party.

  15. I've heard so many wonderful things about this book--it feels like I'm the only one who hasn't read it yet. Been saving my money to go buy it but I'd love a chance to win it! Thanks for the great reviews today.

    *in case you needed my e-mail address :D

  16. Jill,
    This book has been near the very tippy top of my wishlist since I started seeing it on blogs!! It sounds terrific!! AND it's exciting for me because it's set in New England and I don't know if you've noticed but not many Christian Ficiton books are set in NE's just a fact. And probably I only notice that because I LIVE in NE, but it's a lovely place and more books should be set here! Lol...

    Anyway, it was SO cool to see some familiar faces in the pictures : ) I'm glad everyone thinks it's so good because that makes me want to read it even more!

    The food looks yummy! I'll have to grab some, but not too much because I have an awards banquet going on right now at my blog. AND you're invited!! You've got something waiting for you, girl : ) I think I left a comment on your last post, but maybe it got lost in the shuffle, sorry!

    Thanks for this exciting opportunity!

  17. Jill, I've been looking forward to this Virtual Book Party in Jody's honor for weeks. Thanks for planning and hosting it. What fun!

    I love how you described The Preacher's Bride as "miss-your-birthday-party-good." To be stopped ten pages shy of The End had to be tough, even if it was for such a great reason. =)

    Since I live in California, home of the Jelly Belly factory, I'm adding a ginormous bowl of their jelly beans to the goody table.

    (PS - I've got an autographed copy of TPB, so please don't enter my name in the drawing.)

  18. Patrice: The treats are so sinfully delicious, I'm not sure the calories aren't jumping through the Internet!


    Erica: I do that too! Books are the best rewards!

    Cindy: Yay! I'm adding you to the drawing!

    Hannah: Ooo...awards banquet! I'm coming over!

    Keli: My kids are fighting over the jelly bellies!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  19. Great photos, Jill!!
    I'm really happy for Jody, and everyone who gets a chance to read her book. (Did I mention that I won a copy!!! It's not my usual genre choice for reading but I'm really looking forward to it. It sounds like a page turning thriller with emotional depth.)

  20. Paul: Congratulations! It's a wonderful book. Jody has a gift for keeping the reader turning the page!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  21. Loved, loved, loved Jody's debut book! It was every bit as wonderful as you said! I'd love to win a copy to give away to friends that I've loaned MY copy to!

  22. Yay Jody! I'm still waiting for my hubby to take a decent snapshot of me reading your book. Not the ones with my scarf wrapped around my head!

    Love this poignant story of faith and love. The characters sweep into your heart instantly, leaving a longing to follow from page to page.

    Splendid reading:)

  23. Erin A: Welcome! I'll add you to the drawing!

    Tamika: Pictures...uggh! I force my kids to take any necessary pictures!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  24. What fun! Sounds like quite a book. Thanks for sharing (and for the treats!).

  25. Love the virtual party for Jody, Jill! Her book sounds like a winner and I'd love to be entered in your giveaway! morgan(dot)maria(dot)i(at)gmail(dot)com

    *I'll be enjoying that dessert in the cup - it looks amazing!!

    Have a wonderful weekend!

  26. I loved your virtual party. Felt like I was there and enjoying the fun with all of you. I remember when Jody was wondering how she would fix this book and work on a few others at the same time. She seems to have succeeded very well. It looks like whe has a winner on her hands.

  27. Very cool post, Jill! I saw this book at a book store in the Amana Colonies and almost bought it. Now I'll have to buy a copy. :) Thanks for the nudge!

  28. You throw a great party Jill! I am reading Jody's book this weekend and I was so impressed by the romance and how it was presented in this book--awesome!!

  29. One can never have too large a party. That's what I always say. Congrats Jody, I'm so proud of you! Hugging, wiping tears which snuck from corners of eyes when I wasn't looking, and tasting all the yummy treats. Oh, I almost forgot: here's a caramel apple cheesecake I brought. Shall I move this chocolate truffle thing over to make room for it? Oh, eat the chocolate truffle? Why, thank you, I believe I will!

    Jill, you are a specatular hostess! Promise me you'll do my debut party, dahlink!

  30. Connie: It IS a great book!!

    Maria: I want one of those cuppy things too!

    Nancy: She's done an amazing job. I can't wait to read her next book!

    Tyrean: Thanks!

    Sharon: Set aside a block of time, because you won't want to put it down!

    Terri: Me too! Amazing!

    Jen: Did you say caramel apple cheesecake?? YUM!! I would LOVE to throw a party for your debut book!

    Thanks so much for stopping by!

  31. Oh no!! I missed the party! And I didn't send in my quote. Whoops! I really liked the book though! I didn't know what would happen next, which is always a good thing. I'm going to link to this post when I put up my review, okay?

    Great deserts, btw. Yum!

  32. Jessica: The nice thing about virtual parties is that you can't miss them!! Thanks!


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