Monday, June 4, 2012

Faith Readers Review: Wildflowers from Winter by Katie Ganshert

The excitement was over-the-top! Not only was our rockstar, Jan Kerley, bringing Surprise Strawberry cupcakes (the surprise was a cream cheese and chocolate chip center...uh yeah, awesome) but we had the amazing opportunity to skype with author, Katie Ganshert--her first book club group to chat live with! Yay! You can see our picture on her book club page HERE! She has the cake from the story (which had I been on my A game, I'd have baked) as well as discussion questions and a youtube video for bookclubbers! So cool!  

We spent the first 30 minutes of our time discussing the book--yah know before Katie's turn! :)  

Our rating 1-5 stars: 4 stars!

I think for the first time ever, everyone liked this book! Here's some of the things we said pre-Katie:

"I connected with Bethany from the very get-go."

"I didn't connect with her at first but then I realized how insecure she was, and by the end I forgot she was a fictional character."

"I loved the romance! It wasn't too much but just enough that it didn't overpower the real story."

"I want to meet Evan! Whoo--that kiss!"

"Whoo--that dance!!"

"I thought Robin's grief was real, too real. It hit home and that's all I could focus on." 

"I think the author wrote beautifully but not over my head."

"I want that cake recipe!"

"I'd like Evan!"

And then we had the chance to skype with the beautiful, smart, and funny Katie Ganshert! She was very personable and interactive with us which is fabulous!  She even asked us questions! I loved that and so did our Faith Readers. It made us all feel valuable. I can't quote everything said because I don't want to give anything away! But here's a few things I can share!

Katie sent us a picture of who she thought Evan looked like! 

She explained some of the changes her editor asked for, which was amazing how she pulled off those feats! 

She talked about some of her inspiration, people she talked to about grief and a book she read.

Everyone took turns on the camera asking questions and laughing. It was a great night! 


Katie's debut novel, Wildflowers from Winter is an amazing book and I encourage anyone to read it! In honor of her release, I've invited Katie to spend the rest of the week on the blog!

Wednesday, she'll be sharing a powerful devotion with you and on Friday we'll play Would You Rather with Bethany and Evan, her main characters and Katie herself! It's going to be lots of fun so make sure you come back and visit! 

Here's a sneak peek at Wildflowers from Winter! 


A young architect at a prestigious Chicago firm, Bethany Quinn has built a life far removed from her trailer park teen years. Until an interruption from her estranged mother reveals that tragedy has struck in her hometown and a reluctant Bethany is called back to rural Iowa. Determined to pay her respects while avoiding any emotional entanglements, she vows not to stay long. But the unexpected inheritance of farmland and a startling turn of events in Chicago forces Bethany to come up with a new plan.

Handsome farmhand Evan Price has taken care of the Quinn farm for years. So when Bethany is left the land, he must fight her decisions to realize his dreams. But even as he disagrees with Bethany's vision, Evan feels drawn to her and the pain she keeps so carefully locked away. 

For Bethany, making peace with her past and the God of her childhood doesn't seem like the path to freedom. Is letting go the only way to new life, love and a peace she's not even sure exists? 

What's your favorite cupcake? Have you ever made a recipe an author included in the novel? 

21 comments:

  1. AWESOME!! Love that Katie Ganshert!! And that cake looks so yummy! I have yet to skype. I think I need to skype with a friend. You interested? You know... research.

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  2. It was an absolute blast Skyping with you and your book club friends. I'm so glad everyone liked it! Thanks SO much for reviewing and for helping me spread the word, Jessica. You are the bomb dot com (yep, I said it)

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  3. Oh, fun!! Katie's book is on my TBR list!
    I have never mde a recipe from a book, but I have been tempted. There are some great bread recipes in the book: How to Bake the Perfect Life.

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  4. Oh, how fun. Yet again, I wish I was in a book club. But I think I'd have to organize it and I don't have time. Maybe someday...

    My MIL makes these ah-mazing cupcakes. They're like chocolate ganache with a raspberry filling. To. Die. For. Yum yum.

    Have a great day! Looking forward to your email/text. :D I agree that we shouldn't be on opposite sides of the country. Boo. Love you!!

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  5. Sounds like so much fun! I want those cupcakes! :) Your picture is too cute. I'm with Lindsay. I'm in a non fiction book club which is a lot of fun but I would also like to get involved with a fiction book club. It looks like a blast and how fun to get to skype with Katie and ask questions!

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  6. Yay for a whole week with Katie Ganshert on your blog!

    I, too, loved Wildflowers from Winter. The characters tugged at my heart all the way through. I'm especially excited that Robin gets a story all her own in the sequel! :)

    Obviously I have not eaten enough cupcakes in my life because I can't think of my favorite. Although, my sister did make these adorable frog cupcakes for my nephew's one-year birthday last year...so I'll go with that. :)

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  7. What a fun way to read a book together and celebrate with cupcakes while chatting with the author! I resonnated with the very real comments from your group, Jessica. Katie's beautiful writing made me forget that the characters were fictional. THAT is AWESOME writing.

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  8. What a great idea! Sounds like fun!

    I don't have a favorite recipe, but I have had some amazing cheesecake cupcakes that melt in your mouth!!

    Fun post. Thanks for sharing!!

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  9. My favorite cupcake is a toss-up between two from a bakery where my sister used to work (www.muddysbakeshop.com). One was a "pucker up" (lemon cake with lemon frosting) and the other is called "prozac" (chocolate cake with chocolate fudge icing.) It's a good thing she doesn't work there anymore - those leftovers can be dangerous!

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  10. I want the cupcakes you had! My mom always made homemade Hostess cupcakes--the chocolate ones w/ fillings...oh did THAT make me the favorite kid to trade with at school:)

    WFW is on my book pile - I cannot wait to read it! Every review I've read has been glowing - congrats Katie!

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  11. Looks like you guys had a blast!! Love that your club was the first to invite Katie to speak too. :-)

    Brown Bottom Cupcakes! So good they should be illegal.

    And yes, I have tried recipes! So much fun to taste what you've been reading about. ;)

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  12. How cool is this!!!!! Thanks so much for sharing. I love hearing the comments and look forward to meeting Evan. *grin*

    I don't like cupcakes, but I like to look at them and eat their icing.

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  13. If there is a receipe in a book yep I'm gonna make it (unless it involves beets or liver) Cupcakes OH MY GOODNESS I will travel to the moon for a good cupcake (I mean really now I am a g-mama) pecan pie cupcakes from Ann Olivia's (home of the glittered cupcake) can cause me to enjoy live in the land of gluttony!(BTW AO can be found in Hernando Ms and Pigeon Forge Tn)

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  14. Excellent article, Jessica! And I can't wait for "Would you rather" on Friday! Too much fun!

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    1. Oh, and as far as cupcakes - can't have them. My sweet girls keep me in sugar-free, double-chocolate, sour cream muffins, but that's the best I can do. (And they really ARE the best!)

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  15. I have Katie's book on my list. Love your review! Now I want to read that kissing scene. I look forward to reading it soon.

    Love chocolate cupcakes...

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  16. Your book club meeting looked awesome! Who wouldn't want to participate with such a fabulous author and great cupcakes to boot?! I'm on chapter 14 in Wildflowers from Winter and I'm loving every page. The characters are so real and the story is gripping. I'm turning each page wondering when I'm going to discover another piece of the puzzle.

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  17. How fun to Skype with Katie!
    And while I often read the recipes authors tuck into their books, I've never made one of them.
    My favorite cupcake?
    Gluten-free -- and heavy on the icing.
    ;o)

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  18. I love Katie! And I loved her book! I don't have a favorite cupcake...anything with chocolate and sugar is good for me. :)

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  19. Oh my word, those cupcakes look UH-mazing! And how fun to get to chat with Katie on Skype! I agree, her book is fabulous. And I have a feeling the convo was just as much fun for her as you guys. :)

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