Tuesday, November 27, 2012

More Christmas Cookies

Here's a fun Christmas cookie recipe. Chocolate Meltaway Brownie Bites!

If you have a book club, these would be a hit served with hot chocolate.

From Hershey's Kitchens

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Comfort Food for Writers & Readers

Hershey's Peanut Butter Brownies


  • 1 cup (2 sticks) butter or margarine, melted
  • 1-1/2 cups sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2/3 cup HERSHEY'S Cocoa
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1-1/4 cups chopped pecans or walnuts, divided
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) butter or margarine
  • 1-2/3 cups (10-oz. pkg.) REESE'S Peanut Butter Chips
  • 1 can (14 oz.) sweetened condensed milk (not evaporated milk)
  • 1/4 cup HERSHEY'S Semi-Sweet Chocolate Chips, melted*


  1. Heat oven to 350°F. Grease 13x9x2 baking pan.
  2. Combine melted butter, sugar, eggs and vanilla in large bowl; beat well. Add flour, cocoa and milk; beat until blended. Stir in 1 cup nuts. Pour into prepared pan.
  3. Bake 25 to 30 minutes or just until edges begin to pull away from sides of pan. Cool completely in pan on wire rack. Melt 1/2 cup butter and peanut butter chips in medium saucepan over low heat, stirring constantly. Add sweetened condensed milk, stirring until smooth; pour over baked layer.
  4. Place chocolate chips in small microwave-safe bowl. Microwave at MEDIUM (50%) 45 seconds; stir. If necessary, microwave at MEDIUM an additional 15 seconds at a time, stirring after each heating, just until chips are melted when stirred. Drizzle bars with melted chocolate; sprinkle with remaining 1/4 cup nuts. Refrigerate 1 hour or until firm. Cut into bars. Cover; refrigerate leftover bars. About 36 bars.
You can find this recipe here: 

Friday, November 9, 2012

A Review by Brenda Hurley for Before the Scarlet Dawn,

"Before the Scarlet Dawn" is the first book in 'The Daughters of the Potomac Series'. The story begins in Derbyshire, England, in 1775. Eliza Bloom's father, a Vicar, is on his deathbed. The love between him and his daughter is a true Christian love, both unconditional and deep.

Immediately following his death, Eliza is evicted from the only home she has even known. Meeting up with a childhood acquaintance, but now a grown man, Hayward Morgan catches Eliza's eye and heart. However, Hayward is prejudiced against Eliza's social standing, and believes she is 'beneath his station' in life. He knows that Eliza is beautiful in outward appearance, but she also possesses a beautiful and strong-willed inner spirit.

Through a turn of events, Hayward marries Eliza. Traveling with her devoted maid Fiona (who is like a mother and friend to Eliza), the three travel together to Maryland in America, to begin life anew in the vast wilderness and colonies.

Eliza eventually gives birth to a precious daughter, Darcy, whom she loves dearly along with Hayward. Eliza wants nothing more than for Hayward to actually "say" the words 'I love you', aloud. But from his domineering and cruel father, he learned NEVER to say those words to any woman, nor to announce any sentimental feelings -- as that would surely be considered a sign of weakness. His father taught him that -- 'man is the master, and to be obeyed', and woman the door-mat. And now, being a proud, prejudiced and stubborn individual, Hayward can only love Eliza's outer beauty. As to loving the person she is on the 'inside', his love is conditional and hardened toward her -- to prove he is 'the man' of the household, and, in control.

When Hayward goes off to War to be a Patriot, the days turn into several years. Eliza never stops loving Hayward with everything in her, hoping that both patience and time will win him over to saying he loves her. Many hardships come along in his absence though -- trials, ordeals, terror, and losses. But also comes along the neighbour Halston, who is more than willing to help the ladies out through these various trials and ordeals -- while showing and expressing his true inner feelings without shame.

Learning of Hayward's eventual death, Eliza in a weakened state of heart and mind, a time of devastation from extreme loneliness and despair -- turns to Halston's open arms ... to be consoled and comforted.
Later, it is learned that Hayward did not die in the War, and he returns home. Eliza has to live with her shame and deceit, until eventually Hayward guesses her secret.

In shame, anger and unforgiveness ... he sends her away from their home, away from their daughter, and back to England. Although Eliza begs and begs for Hawyard to forgive her, he cannot break the walls of pain, ice, and hardness around his prideful heart.

Eliza, so filled with her grief and guilt, searches for a new life. And mostly, for forgiveness. Can she once again find it ? Can God forgive her, and restore her heart to peace and contentment ? Will she "let go, and, let God" heal her ?

If you have ever struggled with being forgiven, then this book is for you. Read on to find out what happens in this exciting saga -- where you will identify with -- life's -- battles, hardships, pain, and even .... overcoming.

Monday, November 5, 2012


Remember the days when publishers would send writers on tour? They had an itinerary, go from town to town, bookstore to bookstore, signing their latest novel. They still do, if you are a bestselling author and can be away from home for a while and your publisher is willing to pay all the expenses.

Yet with the Internet virtual tours can take authors around the world, and readers everywhere can get to know them. Of course face-to-face is always preferable, but it's not always doable. 

I'm on tour for the entire month of November. Beside Two Rivers will be on a different blog each day. I hope you stop in. Each blogger will share their opinion of the book and I'll be stopping in to talk to readers.

Here's the schedule. You might know some of these bloggers.

Beside Two Rivers Virtual Book Publicity Tour Schedule

Monday, November 5
Book Review at Maureen’s Musings
Tuesday, November 6
Book Review & Giveaway at Colloquium
Thursday, November 8
Friday, November 9
Book Review at Broken Teepee
Book Review & Guest Blogging at Jersey Girl Book Reviews
Monday, November 12
Book Review at Five Alarm Book Reviews
Book Review at Ashley’s Bookshelf
Tuesday, November 13
Book Review at 4 the Love of Books
Wednesday, November 14
Book Review at Bookworm Lisa
Thursday, November 15
Friday, November 16
Guest Blogging at Yamina Today
Monday, November 19
Book Review at Everyday Is An Adventure
Book Review at Hardcover Feedback
Book Review at Day By Day in Our World
Tuesday, November 20
Book Review at Splashes of Joy
Wednesday, November 21
Book Review at Legacy of a Writer
Thursday, November 22
Friday, November 23
Book Review at The Book Connection
Monday, November 26
Friday, November 30
Book Review at Sincerely Stacie