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Saturday, March 19, 2022

Book Review and Giveaway - Blended Lives Author: Melissa Wardwell On Tour with Celebrate Lit


About the Book

Book: Blended Lives

Author: Melissa Wardwell

Genre: Christian Contemporary Romance

Release date: February 22, 2022

Wedding bells are ringing on the islands, but more than romance is in the air.

Seth Mikels experienced a fulfilling marriage with his wife until her sudden death left him alone to raise their two daughters. As they approach their teens, it’s obvious that they need a woman’s influence. He’s not looking for love, but he could use the partnership of a wife. Between his handyman business and playing Mr. Mom, time is fading fast.

Sarah Reid has spent the last four years caught in the middle of one island drama after another. Following the most recent fiasco, she hopes to find refuge on Sparrow Island with her two little boys. Climbing bills and a dwindling bank account leaves her no choice but to sell out and move to the mainland. Enter Seth’s handyman skills and an unexpected romance.

With Beth and Scott planning their own Merriweather wedding (complete with a Momzilla), will wedding bells ring out on Sparrow, too?

Read the next Sparrow Island novel in the Independence Islands Series featuring five islands, six authors, and a boatload of happily-ever-afters.

The Independence Islands Series: beach reads aren’t just for summer anymore.


Click here to get your copy!


About the Author

Melissa Wardwell doesn’t mind alternating between the world of writing and the reality of being a mother, but she would rather sit with a good book or a good friend and a cup of coffee.

When she isn’t penning works of fiction, she is busy reviewing books for her blog, Back Porch Reads.

To see more from Melissa Wardwell, visit


More from Melissa

I want to thank you for taking the time to follow this tour. This book was written during one of the most difficult times in my life but, as Beth said, God has turned the mourning into gladness. We are never promised the next breath we breathe or the freedoms that we enjoy, but He does promise that will be with us through every change in our lives.


Sarah and Seth’s stories are tragic and unimaginable for many. They have been brought to the lowest points in their lives but must continue to move on for their children.


Writing this story helped me work through some of my own struggles. Some areas of my life were burning to the ground and I found myself looking for answers as to how to pick up the pieces. Instead, God taught me some pretty important lessons.

I learned to be a woman who spoke clear and true. I learned to show the people around me how much I love them and appreciate them. I learned that only God could fix those broken pieces of our lives and stitch them back together. And lastly, I learned of the beauty of friendship and how important it is in our daily lives. Even though I am glad that journey is over, I will forever cherish the lessons.


I think Gram summed it up nicely for me though.


“When we blend our lives with others, whether in marriage or friendships, we open the door to carry each other’s burdens in life. God gives us certain friendships to help us through tough times to teach us how to be a shoulder for others.”


Fiction is a reflection of reality, so expect some  of the lessons I learned to be reflected in Blended Lives as Sarah and Seth figure out how to navigate the changes I put them through.

My Thoughts

Blended Lives is written  Melissa Wardwell. This is part of the Independence Island Series. The series is written by multiple authors and are all stand alone books. They are all tied together by the Island theme. They are a fun, easy romantic read. 

In Blended Lives Seth is a widower with two daughters. They are approaching a crucial part of their lives where a woman's influence can help. Sarah has come from a fractured, shattered past. She has two boys of her own and is struggling to try and make ends meet. The author has wrote some realistic characters and did a good job portraying that not every single parent is well off.

This book also features characters that were introduced in previous  books. Scott and Beth are planning their wedding. Seeing their upcoming nuptials and the stresses that goes along with that has been fun to follow. 

I love that the characters rely on God and pray to him. Especially being a widower with kids. There is a lot that goes into that that I will never know of. The author took some tough subjects and created a beautiful story with it. 

I received a copy of this book through the Celebrate Lit blogging program, all thoughts are my own. 

Blog Stops

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, March 11

Texas Book-aholic, March 12

Simple Harvest Reads, March 12 (Guest Review from Donna Cline)

Inklings and notions, March 13

For Him and My Family, March 14

Library Lady’s Kids Lit, March 15

deb’s Book Review, March 16

Connect in Fiction, March 16

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 17

Ashley’s Clean Book Reviews, March 18

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, March 19

A Modern Day Fairy Tale, March 20 (Spotlight)

Blogging With Carol, March 20

Musings of a Sassy Bookish Mama, March 21

Blossoms and Blessings, March 22

Aryn the Libraryan, March 23

lakesidelivingsite, March 24


To celebrate her tour, Melissa is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card and a copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.


  1. Blended Lives sounds like an excellent read for me, thanks for sharing it with me and have a wonderful weekend!

  2. Thanks, Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, for sharing your thoughts and have a wonderful weekend!

  3. Thank you so much for taking the time to read Blended lives and share your thoughts. I’m glad to see that you enjoyed it.

  4. I haven’t read any of these independence island books, but I loved you one of these days! It seems like a fun collection.

  5. Thank you for sharing your thoughts on Blended Lives, this is a must read book and series for me and I am looking forward to meeting these characters

  6. This sounds like a good story. Thank you for your review.