Friday, March 23, 2012

THE HEART'S FRONTIER - Virginia Smith - Free Book

Welcome, Virginia. Tell us about your salvation experience.
I was raised in a Christian home, so I’ve known the Lord as long as I can remember. But I accepted him when I was 12 years old, after seeing a movie at church called A Thief in the Night. There was a scene in that book where a girl realized she needed to make a personal decision to ask Jesus into her heart, apart from her parents’ belief. That night I came home and asked my mom to pray with me. We knelt beside the living room sofa and I accepted the Lord as my personal Lord and Savior.

You’re planning a writing retreat where you can only have four other authors. Who would they be and why?
Lori Copeland, because I know how awesome she is to work with after co-authoring 3 novels with her. Brandilyn Collins, because I admire the way she creates tension on every page of her novels. Deb Raney because I admire her skill at characterization. Allie Pleiter, because she’s such a livewire and so creative.

Do you have a speaking ministry? If so, tell us about that.
I’m a certified lay speaker for the United Methodist Church, so I do a bit of speaking to fill in when a pastor is absent. I’ve been invited to speak at ladies retreats around the country as well. Since I’m a fiction lover, my favorite events have involved telling stories and then drawing spiritual parallels.

What is the most embarrassing thing that has happened to you and how did you handle it?
I stood up to speak at a ladies’ retreat once and realized I couldn’t read my notes or my Bible. I’d been putting off getting reading glasses out of vanity, I suppose. But the lighting was pretty dim in that room, and I absolutely could not see. I made a joke about getting old and my vision fading, and someone from the audience gave me a pair of readers. I was able to get through the talk, and the next day I bought two things – a pair of reading glasses, and a giant print Bible!

People are always telling me that they’d like to write a book someday. I’m sure they do to you, too. What would you tell someone who came up to you and said that?
Yes, they do. All the time. I tell them to sit down and do it. There are thousands of people who have a great idea for a book, but they just talk about it. Once they start actually putting words on paper – even if they’re not skilled yet at the craft – they will either fall in love with the process, or they will give it up. Either way, they will never do more than talk about their idea if they don’t act on it!

Tell us about the featured book.
The Heart’s Frontier is my 17th novel. I co-authored the book with the amazing Lori Copeland, who has written westerns many times, but this is my first historical. I loved it! The research was so much fun! Here’s a blurb from the back cover:

A lot can happen on a week-long cattle drive. Kansas 1881 - Halfway through a six-day journey to visit relatives, Emma Switzer's Amish family is robbed of all their possessions, leaving them destitute and stranded on the prairie. Walking to the nearest trading settlement, they pray to the Lord for someone to help. When a dusty cowboy lands in the street at her feet, Emma looks down at him and thinks, “The Lord might have cleaned him up first.” ... Plain and rugged -- do the two mix? And what happens when a dedicated Amish woman and a stubborn trail boss prove to be each other's match?

Please give us the first page of the book.
Apple Grove, Kansas
July 1881

Nearly the entire Amish district of Apple Grove had turned out to help this morning, all twenty families. Or perhaps they were here merely to wish Emma Switzer well as she set of for her new home in Troyer, fifty miles away.

From her vantage point on the porch of the house, Emma’s grandmother kept watch over the loading of the gigantic buffet hutch onto the specially reinforced wagon. Her sharp voice sliced through the peaceful morning air.

“Forty years I’ve had that hutch from my dearly departed husband and not a scratch on it. Jonas, see that you use care!”

If Maummi’s expression weren’t so fierce, Emma would have laughed at the long-suffering look Papa turned toward his mother. But the force with which Maummi’s fingers dug into the flesh on Emma’s arm warned that a chuckle would be most ill-suited at the moment.

How can readers find you on the Internet?
I’m at Plus, Lori Copeland and I have a website together –

Right now I’d love to invite everyone to visit my website (or hers, or ours) to participate in a fun contest to come up with a name for the cow on the front cover of The Heart’s Frontier. Check it out at

That is funny, Ginny. Okay, readers, help her find a name.

Readers, here are links to the book. By using one when you order, you help support this blog.
The Heart's Frontier (The Amish of Apple Grove) - paperback
The Heart's Frontier (The Amish of Apple Grove) - Kindle

Leave a comment for a chance to win a free copy of the book. Please tell us where you live, at least the state or territory. (Comments containing links may be subject to removal by blog owner.)

Void where prohibited; the odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. Entering the giveaway is considered a confirmation of eligibility on behalf of the enterer in accord with these rules and any pertaining local/federal/international laws.

The only notification you’ll receive is the winner post on this blog. So be sure to check back a week from Saturday to see if you won. You will have 4 weeks from the posting of the winners to claim your book.

If you’re reading this on Feedblitz, Facebook, or Amazon, please come to the blog to leave your comment if you want to be included in the drawing. Here’s a link.


Patsy said...

This book sounds really good. Would love to read it.

from South MS


apple blossom said...

love amish books and love this cover looks like there is fun written in the pages.

thanks for chance to win
live in ND

ABreading4fun [at] gmail [dot] com

Susan Johnson said...

This looks like a really good book.

Thanks for entering me in the drawing.

I live in Odessa, Texas

Wendy Newcomb said...

OHHHH, I do so want this book!

I life in FL.


Krista said...

Sounds like a really fun book. Please enter me.

Krista in Oregon

scottsgal said...

I really enjoy Amish fiction - thanks for the chance
cheryl in IL

Katie said...

Please enter me. Its sounds very fun to read! Im from NC,

Katie G.

Pam K. said...

I'm very interested in reading this book since it is set in Kansas. I've read the first chapter and wanted to keep on reading! Thanks for the chance to win a copy of "The Heart's Frontier."


Jo said...

I really enjoy reading Amish stories and this sounds like a very interesting story. Please enter me!

Jo from Southern Arizona

Anonymous said...

Would love to read this book....Thanks...Jackie Tessnair..N.C.

Aizess said...

I enjoy reading Amish books! Please enter me. Thanks for the chance to win.

I live in New York

Judy Cooper said...

I enjoyed the interview. Please enter my name, thank you. Judy C. in Louisiana

Mary Preston said...

I love Westerns, Historical & Amish - THE HEART'S FRONTIER ticks all the boxes for me.

Mary P


Judy said...

I think this book sounds like it will be an absolutely enjoyable one to read. I can sense that it will have some humorous moments in it. I would love to win a copy of "The Heart's Frontier".

Loved the interview. I too was 12 years old when I gave my heart to Christ and was baptized in Big Turkey Lake!

Blessings to you both!
Judy from Indiana

Sharon Richmond said...

Enter me I would love to win a copy of this book it sounds and looks like a great story!! Thanks and God bless.
Sharon Richmond
Blanch, NC.

Joanna Richmond said...

it looks like a really good book, I would Love to read it. Thanks for the chance to win
Joanna Richmond
Blanch NC

Sarah Rebekah Richmond said...

Looks interesting!
Please enter me in the drawing!
God Bless,

Dani's Grandma said...

Would love to win this book, Amish books are my favorite...thanks,Dani's Grandma/OH

Karen G. said...

Wonderful interview. Love reading Amish fiction and would love to win this book. Thank you for the opportunity.

Karen Gervais, Troy, NY

Ingrid said...

ndepube tivallitThank you for the Interview. Your books sounds great and I would love to win it. Amish fiction is my favorite and I like the Cover (smile)

I live in S.Illinois


EJ said...

Wow - mixing Amish Fiction & Westerns - sounds like a great story!

Elaine in Iowa

Abigail Mitchell said...

Enter me!
Blanch, N.C.

rubynreba said...

This is a book I would really enjoy.
Beth from Iowa

Mippy said...

I'd love the opportunity to win a copy to read!
Thank you for the chance!
~Mippy in Northern Utah, USA
bunnysmip (AT) yahoo (DOT) com

Michelle said...

Looks like a great book!