The Reading Habits of Connilyn Cossette (with giveaway)


Loved learning about Conni’s reading habits and I hope you do, too! Be sure to enter the giveaway of Conni’s second novel via the Rafflecopter form below…

Are you a re-reader? Why, or why not? And if you are, what are some of the books you have read over and over?

Not usually. Once I know the ending I am usually satisfied and do not read a book again. I do have exceptions though. I will re-read a book if I want to analyze it for writer-learning purposes, or if it’s a book that captured me years ago and I cannot remember all the nuances. I have, however, read Jane Eyre a number of times because it is a masterpiece.

When is your optimal time to read – do you prefer to read in one long block, or do you also read for five minutes here or there when you can?

If I pick up a book and am caught up within the first few pages, chances are I will finish it that day. I am a very fast reader and have a ridiculously compulsive need to discover the ending, even if I should be sleeping…Book hangovers are a regular occurrence at my house. Coffee is my friend.

I’d love your thoughts on novellas. Are you thumbs up or down? Or does it depend?!

I hate to say it, because I know there a lot of great novellas out there, but if I have my choice I want a big fat juicy novel. I really prefer deep character development and it’s rare that I am satisfied with a novella. But, that being said, I have enjoyed a few whose authors surprised me with layered characters and fantastic writing.

Are you faithful to a genre, an author, or simply quality writing?

I would say quality writing is what draws me to a book, regardless of genre. As a writer I’ve become an horrible book snob and put down a lot of books now, which I never would have done a few years ago. I will read almost any genre as long as it’s well-written, compelling, and captures my interest within the first chapter or so.

Which factors most influence your selection of a book?

When scoping out a new-to-me read I usually will look for a book that has a distinct voice, vivid description, and is unique in some way. I shy away from formulaic-type books. I want a book to surprise me and either keep me on my toes, flipping pages and/or draw me so deep into story-world that I completely forget my own.


Here is my digital TBR pile of books I am reading, re-reading or have just finished. Although I love paperbacks, I read 90%of the time on my Kindle, unless author friends send me books (Hint** send books!)


Your fiction pet peeve?

As I said before, I am a terrible, horrible, no-good very bad book snob, so I have a few.  Shallow characters is one of those, as well as lack of good sensory description, but what will make me put down a book more than anything is a meandering plot, or a lack of plot. I’m a busy girl and if a book doesn’t keep my attention, it gets tossed. Oh, and endless political machinations and war maneuvering bores me silly.

What book have you read this year that you could not put down, and why?

Without a doubt Joanne Bischof’s The Lady and the Lionheart has been a favorite this year. I (stupidly) started it at around 11pm in the bathtub and around 3:30am decided that the bathwater was getting a little too ice-cold and crawled into bed to finish the epilogue. Between the excellent writing, the multi-layered characters, and the powerful message of redemption, I was enthralled from page one.

How do you mark your spot – folded page corner, bookmark, dollar bill, whatever is at hand?

Shhhh. Don’t tell anyone. but I am a corner-folder-downer of my own books. But for library books, my favorite bookmarks are the corners of envelopes! My kids and I keep a stash of envelope corners in the junk drawer because, thankfully, I’ve passed on my book-addiction.

Whose debut novel impressed you more than you anticipated?

I would have to say Dear Mr. Knightley, by Katherine Reay. I’m not usually a fan of books with a lot of letter-writing but the excellent writing kept me absorbed and I cried at the end (which is unusual for me).

When reading, what makes or breaks a story for you?

If I do not connect with the characters within the first few chapters, or have a hard time identifying/rooting for them. I want my characters flawed, but relatable.

What are some of your favourite CF reads from around 10 years ago, or further back?

Some of my favorites are Liz Curtis Higgs’ Scottish historicals and Francine Rivers’ Mark of the Lion series. Both of these authors were hugely inspirational to me as an aspiring writer and are among the few books I have re-read.

Snack/drink of choice while reading?

Coffee or tea for the most part. Usually when I read I’m so absorbed I don’t stop to eat, unless there is some gorgeous description of food, which inevitably drives me to the pantry to scavenge for whatever chocolate I can find.

What book cover has really caught your eye?

There is something about the depth of blue, the stars, and the silhouette on the cover of The Long Journey to Jake Palmer by James Rubart that really draws me in and since I  am a fan of Jim’s writing I am looking forward to reading that one.

Which author makes it easy to turn off your internal editor?

I would say Lori Benton, because her gorgeous writing, absorbing stories, mastery of historical details keeps me completely absorbed in her story-world.

What book do you wish you had written? Why?

I honestly can’t think of an answer to that question since everyone’s life-experience is so unique that I can’t imagine writing anyone else’s vision. Besides, being a chronic procrastinating-project-non-finisher, I am still astounded that I’ve written three books (and counting) of my own!

Thank so much, Conni!

Here’s Conni’s latest novel…

Shadow of the Storm

Having escaped Egypt with the other Hebrews during the Exodus, Shira is now living in freedom at the foot of Mt. Sinai, upon which rests the fiery glowing Cloud containing the shekinah glory of God. When the people disobey Yahweh and build a golden idol, the ensuing chaos gives Shira an unexpected opportunity to learn the arts of midwifery. Although her mother wishes for her to continue in the family weaving trade, Shira’s gifts shine brightest when she assists with deliveries. In defiance of her mother, Shira pursues her heart’s calling to become an apprentice midwife.

When a delivery goes horribly wrong, Shira finds herself bound to a man who betrayed her, the caretaker of three young children, and the target of a vengeful woman whose husband was killed by Shira’s people, the Levites. As contention between the Hebrew tribes and the foreigners fans the flames of another dangerous rebellion, Shira will come face-to-face with the heartbreak of her past that she has kept hidden for so long. How can she let go of all that has defined her to accept the love she’s denied herself and embrace who she truly is?


Connilyn CossetteWhen she is not homeschooling her two sweet kids (with a full pot of coffee at hand), Connilyn Cossette is scribbling notes on spare paper, mumbling about her imaginary friends, and reading obscure, out-of-print history books. There is nothing she likes better than digging into the rich, ancient world of the Bible and uncovering buried gems of grace that point toward Jesus. Her novel Counted With the Stars won the 2013 Frasier Contest and was a semifinalist in the 2013 ACFW Genesis Contest. Although a Pacific Northwest native, she now lives near Dallas, Texas.

Connect with her at

Relz Reviewz Extras
The Inside Scoop! on Connilyn
Visit Connilyn’s website
Buy at Amazon: Shadow of the Storm or Koorong

a Rafflecopter giveaway


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18 Responses to The Reading Habits of Connilyn Cossette (with giveaway)

  1. Thanks for introducing Connilyn to us. I LOVED the questions you asked her. It was fun to read her comments.
    Her book sounds like a really interesting book. I hope to read it someday.
    Thanks again Rel! Great job!

  2. I enjoyed the interview and have “Liked” Conni’s Facebook page. I look forward to reading her books. Thanks for the entry. Blessings.

  3. I don’t have a bathtub to sink into with a good book but it sounds heavenly.

    Haven’t read her books but they sound amazing. I need to put them on my books to be read list.

  4. No, I do not read in the bath. Afraid I would go to sleep and have a soggy book.

  5. Just discovered Relz Reviewz today. What a great interview! I will definitely be roaming around this site to explore more.

  6. Great interview and giveaway. If I had a big enough bath, I probably would enjoy, My favorite reading spot is probably my bed because I don’t see all of the things I should be doing.

  7. I definitely read in the bath too! And I get out when the water gets cold or I’m done my book haha.

    I haven’t read any of Conni’s books, but I’ve heard good things and I hope to get my hands on her books soon!

  8. I don’t think I’ve ever read in the bathtub; I rarely take baths anyways. I’d rather curl up in a blanket by a fire.

  9. I very rarely take baths, but in the past when I have taken a bath I will read for a while as I soak!
    Thanks for the giveaway and fun interview ladies.

  10. I have read “Counted with the Stars” and it is AMAZING!! I highly recommend it!! The story is told through the eyes of an Egyptian girl who is also a slave. The events leading up to the release of the Hebrew people from Pharaoh and their journey to Mt. Sinai along with this Egyptian girl now being a part of the “mixed” multitude is so enthralling. Connilyn Cossette’s writing is so descriptive and flows with a natural God given ability. Give yourself a holiday treat and read “Counted with the Stars” – it’s the gift that keeps on giving!

  11. P.S. – “Shadow of the Storm” is also on my holiday reading feast – Yum-Yum!

  12. I don’t care to read in the bath. I’m afraid I would get so engrossed in a book that I would look like a prune when I came out of the tub.

  13. I am more of a shower person, so I don’t read in the bath, but it really sounds like a wonderful idea.

  14. I’m not a person who soaks in the bath, so I wouldn’t read in the bath. And if I did, I’d be afraid of dropping my book in the water!

    I’ve read really great reviews on this book, thanks for the chance to win a copy Rel!

  15. I don’t read in the bath. I do sneak into the bathroom to read, though, when I should really be asleep!

  16. I like relaxing in the bath and I look for every opportunity to read uninterrupted, but it is so hard for me to read in the bath comfortably. I’m constantly having to dry my hands in order to swipe my Kindle screen. :-)

  17. I’ve tried reading in the tub but I’m always afraid I’ll get the pages wet, so I don’t very often.

  18. Hi everyone, sorry I’m late to the party, I’ve been awfully sick but I am finally back to 100%. Thanks so much Rel for having me on your blog! This was a fun interview! I’ve perfected the art of reading with a Kindle in the tub, all it takes is a nice big Ziploc bag :) I leave my paper books for when I am cuddled up in my reading chair. Good luck everyone on the drawing! If you haven’t read Book One of the series it’s on a huge ebook sale this week so check your favorite retailer :)

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