This Is My Story – Tara Johnson’s Podcast

This Is My Story – Tara Johnson’s Podcast

As I haven’t had time to get a book review written this weekend, and won’t have time until the next weekend, I’m sharing instead about the wonderful Tara Johnson and her podcast, “This is My Story” where I was blessed to be a guest this past week. We covered all sorts of fun and inspirational topics over the course of about 40 minutes, so I hope you’ll get the chance to listen in.

Episode 3: Silver Strands and “Even Ifs” with Crystal Caudill

https://blubrry.com/thisismystorywithtarajohnson/83281318/episode-3-silver-strands-and-even-ifs-with-crystal-caudill/

On today’s show, Tara and Crystal chat about messy families, the power of not being perfect, plastic Christianity and balking heroes of faith. Crystal shares how escaping PE class led her to Christ. The ladies talk about classics, Christian fiction, wild research, and Crystal’s new release Counterfeit Love. Also on this show… Silver strands, Bearing Precious Seed and what God teaches us when we say “even if”.

Links: www.crystalcaudill.com

Bearing Precious Seed- www.bpsmilford.org

Pre-order Crystal’s upcoming novel here: Counterfeit Love: Caudill, Crystal: 9780825447402: Amazon.com: Books

Preorder Bonuses

Preorder Bonuses

Friday’s will be kicking off something new in addition to the book reviews, interviews, and reading challenges. With so much to share about Counterfeit Love and my writing world, I’m going to use Fridays to share about things related to Counterfeit Love and my writing process. This first Friday, I’m excited to share about the preorder bonuses I put together.

So many authors now offer preorder bonuses to their readers, and I wanted to be able to give something to you to thank you for supporting me in this writing journey. I wasn’t quite sure how to accomplish this, but I figured I’d have some fun playing with images.

While Kregel is creating my bookmarks, I made my bookplates, and I absolutely adore them. They say “Fear not. He is with you. Even if . . .” This is based on 2 Chronicles 20:17, the Bible verse that carries the theme of the story. It was a lesson I had to learn myself throughout the writing of Counterfeit Love. “Ye shall not need to fight in this battle: set yourselves, stand ye still, and see the salvation of the Lord with you, O Judah and Jerusalem: fear not, nor be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them: for the Lord will be with you.” When you read the entire context of the story, it is just so powerful. Really. Go read it all the way to the conclusion of the battle, and then read it again, slower. It is amazing what God does.

I also created three phone backgrounds – one focused on the cover, the other focused on the “Even if” statement, and the other on the Bible verse itself. The printable verses are 2 Chronicles 20:17 and Ecclesiastes 4:12, “And if one prevail against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly broken.”

And what good is a freebie if food isn’t involved? Through my research, I found a fun hot chocolate recipe from the Victorian era. There was a sweet version and a not-so-sweet version. Given our generally sweet tooths in America, I went with the sweeter version, even though I myself prefer the dark chocolate version with little to no sweetness.

The only thing I’ve left to create is the video. I have some ideas about what I might include: a personal thank you, some fun facts from my research, maybe even a little bit about the history of the Secret Service. However, I’d LOVE your input. What questions would you have me answer in a preorder video? What things would you want to be included? I’d love to hear your opinion. Drop a comment below, and who knows, I might incorporate it into the video. Or maybe it will become its own blog post!

Just in case you don’t know about the book, I’ve thrown the cover and blurb down below. Next week I’ll share one of my first endorsements.


Can this undercover agent save the woman he loves–or is her heart as counterfeit as the money he’s been sent to track down?

After all that Grandfather has sacrificed to raise her, Theresa Plane owes it to him to save the family name–and that means clearing their debt with creditors before she marries Edward Greystone. But when one of the creditors’ threats leads her to stumble across a midnight meeting, she discovers that the money he owes isn’t all Grandfather was hiding. And the secrets he kept have now trapped Theresa in a life-threatening fight for her home–and the truth.

After months of undercover work, Secret Service operative Broderick Cosgrove is finally about to uncover the identity of the leader of a notorious counterfeiting ring. That moment of triumph turns to horror, however, when he finds undeniable proof that his former fiancée is connected. Can he really believe the woman he loved is a willing participant? Protecting Theresa and proving her innocence may destroy his career–but that’s better than failing her twice in one lifetime.

They must form a partnership, tentative though it is. But there’s no question they’re both still keeping secrets–and that lack of trust, along with the dangerous criminals out for their blood, threatens their hearts, their faith, and their very survival.

Combining rich history, danger, suspense, and romance, Crystal Caudill’s debut novel launches this new historical series with a bang. Fans of Elizabeth Camden, Michelle Griep, and Joanna Davidson Politano will be thrilled to find another author to follow!

Launch Team Applications Are Now Open

Launch Team Applications Are Now Open

It is finally time for me to gather an elite group of readers who will be a part of my launch team. What is a launch team? What’s expected of a Launch Team Operative? What do you get out of the deal? It’s all answered below, along with the application at the bottom of the post. Applications will be accepted through September 30th and then I will contact applicants in mid-October.

WHAT IS A LAUNCH TEAM?

I’m so glad you asked! My launch team is a special group of readers who are enthusiastic about getting the word out about my books to the community at large. These readers are my first readers, part of my inner circle, and my most enthusiastic fans.

WHAT AM I LOOKING FOR IN LAUNCH TEAM MEMBERS?

Enthusiasm and a desire to share about my book within the sphere of their influence. Availability is important too. I depend on these members to do what I cannot: leave reviews about my book, talk about it on Social media and in person, request it from libraries, etc. The potential is endless.

WHAT IS INVOLVED IN BEING A LAUNCH TEAM MEMBER?

As a launch team member, you will receive a free, advanced copy of whatever novel is being released at that time. Members are asked to read the book prior to the release date, then-if they like it (if you don’t like it, you aren’t required to do anything)-spread the word as far and wide as possible! (FYI, you don’t have to be on Facebook to be a part of the launch team.)

The single most important thing launch team members do? Write a brief review for Amazon, Goodreads, BookBub, and/or any other online review sites where you’d like to post it. It only needs to be a paragraph or two.

 

Beyond that, anything else done is icing on the cake! The potential for ideas are endless. I’ve listed a few below, but none are mandatory. I want Launch Team Members to do what they feel comfortable with. The biggest help is the review.

  • Talk about the books on social media sites and in reader groups.
  • Ask your your local library or church library to purchase a copy.
  • Blog about the books.
  • Direct people to my website.
  • Write a review for your local newspaper.
  • Purchase copies to give away as Christmas and birthday gifts.
  • Pin the cover or other pictures from my website to Pinterest.
  • Share your favorite quotes from the book online. If you purchase an e-book, highlight your favorite quotes.
  • Suggest the book on reading forums, like those you can find on GoodReads or Facebook.
  • If you’re part of a Bible study, MOPS, or any other group, tell them about the book.
  • Suggest my latest book to your book club.

WHAT DO YOU GET OUT OF THE DEAL?

Besides receiving a free copy of my book and my undying gratitude, there are some added benefits. You’ll have access to an exclusive Facebook Group just for Launch Team members, a password-protected Launch Team Dashboard, emails just for my Launch Team members with insider information, special Zoom meetings to get some face-to-face time, and occasional personal touches from me.

If this sounds like a team you’d like to be part of, please fill out the application below.

 

Counterfeit Love’s Cover Reveal

Counterfeit Love’s Cover Reveal

It is FINALLY time when I can share with you my cover for Counterfeit Love!! I am so stinking excited. I couldn’t have imagined a better cover for the story. The designer captured everything I desired. So, it is with great excitement I share with you my debut cover for Counterfeit Love.

Cover Reveal

I absolutely adore this cover. The designers at Kregel took what little I offered them and made it into something I could have never dreamed up on my own. I wish I had their individual names so I could give them a shout-out and just tell them how truly grateful I am for all the hard work they put into creating such a beautiful design.

I just love how Broderick is looking back at Theresa with suspicious regard. Has the woman he loved become one of the criminals he hunted? I can’t believe how well the designers captured Theresa’s independent and stubborn nature. They even included her briefcase. I don’t know if you can tell, but the background takes place at the edge of a cemetery where the first couple chapters of the book take place. I can’t believe how perfectly they captured the essence of this story, and I am forever grateful for their talent.

The Back Cover Blurb:

Can this undercover agent save the woman he loves–or is her heart as counterfeit as the money he’s been sent to track down?

After all that Grandfather has sacrificed to raise her, Theresa Plane owes it to him to save the family name–and that means clearing their debt with creditors before she marries Edward Greystone. But when one of the creditors’ threats leads her to stumble across a midnight meeting, she discovers that the money he owes isn’t all Grandfather was hiding. And the secrets he kept have now trapped Theresa in a life-threatening fight for her home–and the truth.

After months of undercover work, Secret Service operative Broderick Cosgrove is finally about to uncover the identity of the leader of a notorious counterfeiting ring. That moment of triumph turns to horror, however, when he finds undeniable proof that his former fiancée is connected. Can he really believe the woman he loved is a willing participant? Protecting Theresa and proving her innocence may destroy his career–but that’s better than failing her twice in one lifetime.

They must form a partnership, tentative though it is. But there’s no question they’re both still keeping secrets–and that lack of trust, along with the dangerous criminals out for their blood, threatens their hearts, their faith, and their very survival.

Combining rich history, danger, suspense, and romance, Crystal Caudill’s debut novel launches this new historical series with a bang. Fans of Elizabeth Camden, Michelle Griep, and Joanna Davidson Politano will be thrilled to find another author to follow!

 

Preorders

If you are interested in preordering a print copy, you can click one of the links below. As of this moment, the e-book is not yet available for preorder, but I will let you know as soon I discover it’s been added. To my knowledge, there won’t be an audiobook at this point, but I look forward to hopefully having that option in the future. My MIL is legally blind, so I know how desired that option can be.

Amazon          Barnes & Noble          Christianbook

*Christianbook has the best deal at the moment.


I hope you love the cover as much as I do. Feel free to share the cover far and wide. I prepared some images for my cover reveal team that you can use as well. Check those out here. Thank you so much for being a part of this writing journey. You’ll never know how much your excitement, support, and prayers mean. I am far from a perfect person or author, but may God always be glorified through it anyway.

Author Desk: Meet the Heroes

Author Desk: Meet the Heroes

Welcome to the end of a crazy month (so crazy, I’m a day late on this post) with the prospect of one more left to go. It’s wild how much our world can change within a matter of weeks. I pray you are staying home, staying healthy, and if you are one of those essential workers getting out every day to serve the rest of us, THANK YOU SO MUCH. My prayers are with you no matter where you may be working.

I am back at editing my Secret Service story, so to shake things up a bit, I thought I’d share the inspiration for each of my Secret Service heroes.

Meet the Heroes of Counterfeit Love

Broderick Cosgrove

Broderick works as an undercover Secret Service operative during the early 1880s. He is focused, loves puzzles, and sees his service to country as primary in his life. He pursues justice and truth with care so that no innocent person comes to harm and all who are guilty face a punishment befitting their crime.

His goal in Counterfeit Love: Ferret out the leaders of an elusive counterfeiting gang before they can get the new counterfeit twenties into circulation and damage an already fragile economy.

The Challenge: His former fiancée has somehow become entangled with the gang. She is innocent, but how can he prove it and protect her while doing his job? 

The real inspiration behind the character:

Andrew L. Drummond, Chief of the Secret Service between February 1891 and January 1894 – The initial inspiration for this story came from his book True Detective Stories. One of my favorite stories is where he was “arrested” and escaped jail with a counterfeiter in order to build the trust of an elusive gang. Where did his escapades lead him, but Cincinnati? The location of my story.

Andrew Darlington

While Andrew Darlington may not seem the hero type, he is a man trying to overcome a secret past which could cost him his job as a Secret Service operative. Therefore, he strikes every case with a vengeance. Collateral damage don’t matter so long as the criminal is brought to justice and put behind bars. 

His Goal in Counterfeit Love: Prove Theresa Plane is the real mastermind behind the elusive counterfeiting ring. No one knows better than him how corrupted and devilish a woman’s soul can be.

The Challenge: Broderick Cosgrove has been swindled by the woman and now he must work around a fellow operative to bring the truth to light.

 The real inspiration behind the character:

William P. Wood, Chief of the Secret Service from January 1863 to May 1869

Chief Wood earned a reputation for rash aggressiveness. In the book Illegal Tender, David R. Johnson described Chief Wood as “prowl[ing] the boundaries between legitimate and deviant society” and “lacking scruples and good judgment.” This was the basis for my backstory for Darlington. He is a complex character which you only scratch the surface of in Counterfeit Love. 

Josiah Isaacs

Poor Josiah Isaacs is an accidental play boy. He can’t help it that women take his friendliness to be flirtation, and bless his soul, he’s incapable of purposely breaking a woman’s heart. He’s been cornered into a proposal multiple times, and uses cases which take him away from home to convince the women he’s not a good for them so they break it off. He’s smart, caring, and understands Broderick’s position, but duty to their job must have the final say in the case.

His goal in Counterfeit Love: Allow Broderick–his partner and friend–the support and space he needs to prove whether or not Theresa Plane is guilty, but stand firm in revealing the truth should evidence prove otherwise.

The Challenge: Withholding information from their superiors could cost their job, and when the evidence continues to point toward Theresa Plane’s guilt, his friendship with Broderick becomes strained.

 

The real inspiration for the character:

There isn’t one particular Secret Service operative who stuck out to me to inspire Isaacs. He is sort of a meshing of many operative stories and characters. For me, I wanted a character who would play off the others and be fun to develop, and what more fun can I have than with a man who doesn’t mean to flirt and keeps getting engaged even when he never wants to marry? The story I have planned for him will be so much fun!

 

Pin It on Pinterest