11.21.2014

Stolen: The True Story of a Sex Trafficking Survivor By Katariina Rosenblatt

There is hope, even on the darkest of days
Katariina Rosenblatt was a lonely and abused young girl, yearning to be loved, wanting attention. That made her the perfect target. On an ordinary day, she met a confident young woman--someone Kat wished she could be like--who pretended to be a friend while slowly luring her into a child trafficking ring. A cycle of false friendships, threats, drugs, and violence kept her trapped.
As Kat shares her harrowing experiences, her ultimate escape, and her passionate efforts to now free other victims, you'll see that not only is sex trafficking happening frighteningly close to home--it's also something that can be stopped. Stolen is a warning, a celebration of survival, and a beacon of hope that will inspire you.

Sex trafficking. Such a hard topic. While we rarely give it much thought an think it's only in the movies, it's happening around us everyday. Katariina's memoir into her life as an abused and broken child tells the story of a troubled girl looking for love in all the wrong places. While I felt like each chapter I turned to it seemed it was just nothing but downfalls. When the girl was delivered from one trap she fell into another. I'm not sure how one person can be lured so many times, but then again I've never been in her shoes and in such a world of drugs, deception and lies.
It did open my eyes to human trafficking and the sex trade. Thankfully God is still God and He's still in the saving and delivering business. It seemed that despite all odds, Katariina has become a strong woman of God helping those who were in the same shoes as she was.

I received this book in exchange for an honest review

11.10.2014

Their Name Is Today: Reclaiming Childhood in a Hostile World

There’s hope for childhood. Despite a perfect storm of hostile forces that are robbing children of a healthy childhood, courageous parents and teachers who know what’s best for children are turning the tide. Johann Christoph Arnold, whose books on education, parenting, and relationships have helped more than a million readers through life’s challenges, draws on the stories and voices of parents and educators on the ground, and a wealth of personal experience. He surveys the drastic changes in the lives of children, but also the groundswell of grassroots advocacy and action that he believes will lead to the triumph of common sense and time-tested wisdom. Arnold takes on technology, standardized testing, overstimulation, academic pressure, marketing to children, over-diagnosis and much more, calling on everyone who loves children to combat these threats to childhood and find creative ways to help children flourish. Every parent, teacher, and childcare provider has the power to make a difference, by giving children time to play, access to nature, and personal attention, and most of all, by defending their right to remain children.

“Don’t worry that your children never listen to you, worry that they are always watching you” - Robert Fulghum.

Totally changed my outlook on parenting. With technology and ease of access to so much these days, what are we, as parents, doing to our own children? The pressure to perform, to learn, to excel, are creating so much unease and discontent. We are not letting our children be children anymore, we are forcing them to grow up too soon. We (myself included) tend to be so busy worrying about other things in the world we forget our children need our attention too. Instead we send them off with the table, computer or tv to entertain them instead when all they need is time with us, their parents. 
This is definitely a great book for a parents discussion group. We all could truly learn from it

9.09.2014

Your Core By Callie Grant

Everyone has an inner place made by God for welcoming and meeting with Him. Inspired by Ephesians 3:14-19, Your Core appeals to the youngest readers with simple text and colorful scenes to convey a difficult concept to grasp—even for many adults.
This is an Absorb book, which connects studies about the facts of God with a child’s inner life. Children assimilate on a personal level who God is and how they are made to be with him, trust him and love him—the life of a believer.
What a simple, yet powerful storybook! Easy to read and understand for small children and the illustrations are so vibrant and eye catching. I've read it to my son several times and helps me answer questions he may have in a much simpler way. I love that there's more and more literature showing up for children teaching them about their spiritual life and values.

Answering Your Kids' Toughest Questions: By Elyse Fitzpatrick and Jessica Thompson

The Honest, Loving Answers Children Need to Hear

It's not easy to know what to say when a child asks about a dying grandma, or the reality of the devil, or some act of violence featured on the news. But ignoring the questions won't help. Elyse Fitzpatrick and her daughter Jessica Thompson carefully walk parents through these difficult conversations, one topic at a time. These experienced moms will come alongside readers, offering helpful hints and age-appropriate guidelines on how much to share and when. And most importantly, they teach how to answer children in a way that points back to the truth of God's amazing love.


I'm sure we could all use some direction when it comes to answering tough questions our children have regarding their faith, and come on, they are going to have them. Their answers are backed by scripture which is one reason I know I'll refer to this book for a long long time. It gives us insight in how to respond to children as young as 5. While there is no one book that has all the answers kids ask, this is a great one to add to your library. Definitely a 5 star!

Copy provided by Bethany House in exchange for an honest review

7.12.2014

Silenced by Dani Pettrey

Jake Knew Something Was Wrong.
But He Never Guessed
How Wrong.

A relaxing day of rock climbing takes a disturbing turn when Kayden McKenna's route brings her face-to-face with a dead climber. Is it a terrible accident or something darker? When the case is handed to overburdened sheriff Landon Grainger, he turns to Jake Westin for help. With Jake's past now revealed, he's ready to use his talent for investigation again--but he could never prepare for where the mystery will take him.

Kayden's climbing expertise soon leads her and Jake to the realization that the death was no accident. And worse, it seems the killer is onto them. When strange things begin happening in Yancey, Jake is terrified that once again his world may put someone he loves in danger. But the truth is far worse than he could ever imagine.
 
This is book 4 in the Alaskan courage series, it's important to the story if you read the previous novels as it helps with character development and to see what they have already been through. Pettrey certainly created a page turner in this series and leaves you guessing right up until the end. There is a mix of drama, suspense, mystery and romance all wrapped up in one as we finally see a romance hatch from feelings toward each other in previous books. I would recommend this series to anyone looking for a great suspense!!
 
Book provided in exchange for an honest review by Bethany House Publishers.

Raising a Princess By John Croyle

Much is made about raising your daughter to be a princess. What does that really mean? Former Alabama defensive back John Croyle, and owner of child safe-haven Big Oak Ranch, believes the answer lies in Proverbs 31.

In "Raising a Princess" Croyle walks through the importance of raising young women, in this Biblical, strong and compassionate manner. Croyle’s specific approach to raising young women is spelled out through the acronym P.R.I.N.C.E.S.S:

Praiseworthiness – A princess understands she is worthy of praise simply because she is made in the image of God.
Righteousness – She lives according to God’s normal, not the world’s normal.
Initiative – A princess makes good things happen.
Nurture – God built into girls and women an instinct for nurture that boys and men simply don’t have in the same way.
Character – A girl of character knows what her deepest desires are and chooses accordingly.
Empowerment – Your princess needs to understand life isn’t just something that happens to her. She has the power to choose.
Servant- Heartedness – A princess finds purpose not in being served, but serving others.
Stability – As stability is provided for daughters, they will grow into the kind of people who help create stability for others.

I chose to review this book because I previously read the Two minute drill to manhood and love reading about Big Oak Ranch. It certainly says something about a man to give up a big famed football career to start a Haven for young people. I don't have a daughter but there's still principles I can apply to help young girls I come across daily at church, school and work. Our children are going to grow and be the people we raise them to be so why not raise them in the way of the Lord and to teach them to love and value themselves.
I received this book in exchange for an honest review from Shelton Interactive 



50 Things You Need to Know About Heaven by Dr. John Hart

We all want to know what happens after we die. Will we go to heaven? What will we do there? Will we see our loved ones?

It turns out the Bible is filled with answers to your most important questions, explaining what heaven looks like, who will be there, and how to get there in the first place. In this book you will find clear explanations of these passages, giving you an honest and beautiful picture of our eternal home. Find comfort and peace in the truth about heaven.

 
I have to admit, this is not a book I have finished, I have skimmed several different sections reading things I have been wondering about! Such a great book of questions and scriptural backed answers. This book is a great read for new Christians and old alike. I know this is something I will refer back to again and again as questions arise in my life and it's also something I can refer to as my son is growing and has new questions everyday!

Book provided in exchange for an honest review from Bethany House Publishers

Deliver Us from Evil: A Pastor’s Reluctant Encounters with the Powers of Darkness (Repackaged Edition) by Don Basham

Are Christians at risk of demonic invasion?
Absolutely not, thought Pastor Don Basham when another pastor suggested evil influences might be causing turmoil in his church and failures in his ministry. But after more troubling and perplexing problems, Basham began to discover he was wrong.
In this page-turning account, Basham chronicles his reluctant journey from disbelief to acceptance in the existence of demonic spirits. More than a story, he imparts what he discovered about demons, the difference between infestation and possession, and how to engage in spiritual warfare. He also describes the biblical tools that bring about deliverance from demonic influence.
Through this moving story, you will learn how to recognize the presence of evil spirits, pray for deliverance and protect against demonic invasion. It’s never too late. You can find the freedom and healing you need—and be an agent of deliverance to others.

 
How aware, or unaware, are we of the forces of darkness against us as a Child of the King? This was Don Bashams case when he was trying to bring a nation to the Lord. Basham was attacked repeatedly by evil forces that tried to destroy his ministry. A great read and a great help to get readers to recognize the forces that may be against them and how to relinquish their control over our lives. Some serious heavy reading material but I could not put it down.
 
I received a free copy of this book for Chosen Books in exchange for an honest review.

Child Of Mine By David & Beverly Lewis


Flight instructor Jack Livingston has been raising his eight-year-old adopted niece, Natalie, since the accident that took her parents' lives. When he travels, Natalie is tenderly cared for by her Amish nanny, Laura Mast, who loves the little girl as her own.

Eight excruciating years ago, Kelly Maines's baby was kidnapped. Determined to find her child, Kelly has tirelessly pursued every lead to its bitter end. And now, with the clock ticking, one last clue from a private investigator ignites a tiny flame of hope: Just a few miles away lives a young girl who matches the profile.

Can this be, at long last, Kelly's beloved daughter?


Beverly Lewis. Need I say more? I just love this author! She is so well versed in the Amish lifestyle and makes every character come alive. While this book was longer than most of her novels, I thoroughly enjoyed the storyline and the collaboration with her husband. They both have a true talent in storytelling and makes everything seem so real. I love how they combine the English world with the Amish world so we can draw from the parallels and how two worlds so close together can be so different. This is a story of a Mothers heartbreak and how the pieces are put back together.


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group"

The Modern Life Study Bible: God's Word for Our World

As members of the modern age, we sometimes feel disconnected from the world of the Bible. But if we look closely, we can see that although cultures change, our basic challenges stay the same. We still struggle with issues like community, justice, economic stress, political tensions, and cultural and ethnic differences. We still wonder who God is, how to discern His will, and how we fit into His plan.
Using historical context and fresh insights backed by biblical scholars, The Modern Life Study Bible explores the timeless truths that connect the people and stories of the Bible to the opportunities and demands we face today. God is at work in our world, inviting us to experience His presence. The Modern Life Study Bible is designed to draw you in, helping you to know and embrace what it means to follow Christ in today’s world. In addition to being fully printed in color, features of this Bible include 66 inspirational biographies, indexes to aid navigation and study, in-text maps, reading plans and more.


 
Very nicely packaged and presented in a hardcover format so it is durable and able to hold up to much wear and tear. The study notes are relevant to todays society and it comes in the NKJV which I am used to. Easy to understand, clear and concise. Love the topical index at the end which allows me to search something quickly and easily!


Book provided by Shelton Interactive in exchange for an honest review

Finding Spiritual Whitespace By Bonnie Gray


How many of us find ourselves running on empty with no time for rest, no time for ourselves, no time for God? 

Bonnie Gray knows what that's like. On the brink of fulfilling a lifelong dream, she saw her plans shatter into a journey through painful memories and anxiety. In her search for answers, she made an important discovery: we all need spiritual whitespace.

Whitespace.
 It's the space on a page left unmarked. Untouched. Whitespace makes art beautiful. It gives the eye a place to rest. Just like beautiful art, our souls need balance and beauty.    

With heartbreaking honesty, Bonnie guides you to discover a better story for yourself, one that feeds your soul and makes room for rest. Infused with biblical encouragement and thought-provoking prompts, this book shows us how to create space in the everyday for God, refreshment, and faith--right in the midst of our stress-frayed lives.

The only way I can describe this book is that it's a breath of fresh air! Just what I needed in this busy life we live. From being a wife, mom and working full time life is just whizzing by and sometimes at the end of the day I haven't even had a chance to breathe or take time to spend with God. We all need to make time. I found I could read this book in sections, absorbing and applying what I read and just taking the time I needed to let it all sink in. Great read!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

6.06.2014

One Perfect Spring By Irene Hannon


Independent single mom Claire Summers is doing her best to make lemonade out of the lemons life has handed her. Workaholic Keith Watson is interested only in the bottom line--until a letter from Claire's eleven-year-old daughter reaches his desk and changes everything.

As the executive assistant to a philanthropic businessman, Keith is used to fielding requests for donations. But the girl isn't asking for money. She wants help finding the long-lost son of a neighbor. As Keith reluctantly digs into this assignment in his usual results-oriented style, he has no idea how involved he and Claire will become--nor how unusual the results will actually be. Who could have guessed that a child's kindhearted request would bring love and hope to so many lives . . . including his own?

Through compelling characters and surprising plot twists, fan favorite Irene Hannon offers this tenderhearted story that demonstrates how life is like lilacs--the biggest blooms come only after the harshest winters.




Love Hannon, period. She draws me in every time with her well rounded characters but what got me most of all was the innocence of children and how they can change our lives with just a few words. I find I kept turning pages to see what was happening next and I confessed I skipped ahead to get the results. The plot twist and turns are what kept me going, just when you think you know how it's gonna go, there's another twist. Great book!


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Meant To Be Mine By Becky Wade

Ty Porter has always been irresistible to Celia Park. All through high school--irresistible. When their paths cross again after college--still irresistible. This time, though, Ty seems to feel exactly the same way about Celia. Their whirlwind romance deposits them at a street-corner Las Vegas wedding chapel.

The next morning they wake to a marriage certificate and a dose of cold reality. Celia's ready to be Ty's wife, but Ty's not ready to be her husband. He's a professional bull rider, he lives on the road, and he's long planned to settle down with the hometown girl he's known since childhood.

Five and a half years pass. Celia's buried her dreams so that she can afford to raise her daughter. Ty's achieved all of his goals. Or thought he had, until he looks again into the eyes of the woman he couldn't forget and into the face of the child he never knew he had.

How much will Ty sacrifice to win back Celia's trust and prove to her that their spontaneous marriage can still become the love of a lifetime?





What a great read! The characters are real, raw and face challenges that some of us face daily. While there was some issues with gambling, drugs and drinking I felt this only added to the story line because we are all facing different challenges in our lives and I feel some people can closely relate. This is definitely a great summer read! It shows the immaturity of young people and how they over come that years later. We all make decisions we're not proud of but this book shows how people face challenges and decisions they made at earlier times in their lives.








"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group"

6.04.2014

Until I Found You By Victoria Bylin

Finding each other was only the beginning . . . When Kate Darby swerves off a mountain road to avoid hitting a California condor, she ends up trapped in her car, teetering on the edge of a cliff. Terrified, she breathes a prayer that changes her life.

It's Nick Sheridan who comes to Kate's rescue. Nick is handsome and confident, and he seems to develop a habit of rescuing her, but Kate is in town only until her grandmother recuperates from a stroke. She's not planning to get involved with one of the locals.

Nick is a reformed veteran of life in the fast lane, a new Christian, and a travel writer. When he sees a car dangling on the edge of a cliff, the daredevil in him jumps into action. He doesn't expect to be swept off his feet by the car's occupant. He's made a vow--no dating for a year--but keeping that vow is going to be a lot more difficult now that he's met Kate Darby. . . .





Not sure I've ever heard of this author but the synopsis drew me in. I did find the action was right out of the gate and drew me in right away. But what drew me in the most was that the characters felt like real people. So imperfect. Messy. REAL. I love the redemption and repentance undertones as well as the not so typical love story. Will definitely be reaching for a Bylin book again :)



"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group"


Lost & Found By Sarah Jakes

Don't let your past keep you from a full future.Like every girl, Sarah Jakes dreamed of a life full of love, laughter, and happy endings. But her dreams changed dramatically when she became pregnant at age thirteen, a reality only compounded by the fact that her father, Bishop T.D. Jakes, was one of the most influential megachurch pastors in the nation. As a teen mom and a high-profile preacher's kid, her road was lonely. She was shunned at school, gossiped about at church. And a few years later, when a fairy-tale marriage ended in a spiral of hurt and rejection, she could have let her pain dictate her future.

Instead, she found herself surrounded by a God she'd given up on, crashing headlong with Him into a destiny she'd never dreamed of. Sarah's captivating story, unflinchingly honest and deeply vulnerable, is a vivid reminder that God can turn even the deepest pain into His perfection.

More than a memoir, Lost and Found offers hope and encouragement. Perhaps you, like Sarah, find yourself wandering the detours of life. Regardless of how lost you feel, you, too, can be found.


Why is the preachers daughter always scrutinized. She doesn't define the preacher, he doesn't define her. I'm glad I read this story. It gave me an indepth look into the writers life and the endless pain and heartache she had to endure. Sure a lot of it are our own choices but it is an entirely different ballgame when you're under the microscope so to speak because of your Fathers position. It doesn't make it right but I applaud Sarah for telling her story and I'm sure she will go on to do great and mighty things!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group"

4.25.2014

Hope Runs: An American Tourist, a Kenyan Boy, a Journey of Redemption by Claire Diaz-Ortiz & Samuel Ikua Gachagua

Sammy Ikua Gachagua had lost his father to illness, his mother to abandonment, and his home to poverty. By age ten, he was living in a shack with seven other children and very little food. He entered an orphanage seeing it as a miracle with three meals a day, a bed to sleep in, and clothes on his back.
When Claire Diaz-Ortiz arrived in Kenya at the end of an around-the-world journey, she decided to stay the night, climb Mt. Kenya, then head back home. She entered an orphanage seeing it as little more than a free place to spend the night before her mountain trek. God had other plans. 
Hope Runs is the emotional story of an American tourist, a Kenyan orphan, and the day that would change the course of both of their lives forever. It's about what it means to live in the now when the world is falling down around you. It's about what it means to hope for the things you cannot see. Most of all, it's about how God can change your life in the blink of an eye.

what a great story told from both points of view. An orphan, a runner, and a divine meeting. Within the first few chapters reading about Sammy's life and what he endured it seemed as if there was no hope for his hopeless situation but he seemed to remain positive despite the circumstances. Claire was uncertain as to what she wanted but the book goes on to tell how she and her friend Lara helped form Hope Runs and how they met Sammy and how they changed the life of so many orphans in that little Kenyan village. Such an inspiring read, especially reading about how Sammy had absolutely nothing and he goes on to attend College in the United States. I truly wish all parties nothing but the best for their future.

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group

What Follows After By Dan Walsh

In October 1962, Colt Harrison and his little brother, Timmy, hatched a plan. They would run away from their Florida home, head for their aunt's house in Savannah, Georgia, and refuse to come home until their parents got back together. But things go terribly, terribly wrong. Colt's mother and father must come to grips with years of neglect and mistrust in order to recover their beloved sons, their love for one another, and their broken marriage.
In this emotional story, Dan Walsh takes readers on a journey to rediscover the things that matter most in life--love, truth, and family.

 First of all, let me say how much I love Dan Walsh's writing! I first fell in love with his style with the novel "The Reunion" and I've been hooked ever since! I cannot describe the style, only to say he knows how to lay out a story, draw the reader in from the beginning and leave you sitting for a couple hours because you just have to finish what you started. This book is all about love, redemption, loyalty, trust, misunderstandings and so much more. I love how the book started off as present day in the first chapter then focused on previous events. There's so many lessons to be learned here as a parent myself, made me realize what my child is hearing and understanding and also as a spouse and in the need to trust my husband and pray for my husband and spend time together as well as with God. I'll be looking forward to future writings from Mr. Walsh!!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group

4.13.2014

Not Who I imagined By Margot Starbuck


Do you feel like you're not good enough for God?
Despite the Christian gospel of unearned grace and unconditional love, too many of us still believe that we don't measure up. We might be able to convince ourselves that God's grace covers our past or ensures our acceptance in the future when we breathe our last and are jettisoned off toward heaven, but what about today? What about this moment?
With compassion and wit, Margot Starbuck asks the question, What if God receives me exactly as I am? She explores the unbounded love of God, showing uncertain followers a God whose face is open, kind, and gracious, accepting us just as we are. Right now.



Is it possible God can accept us just as we are? A Mom who forgot to pack her kids lunch and check to see if their faces were clean before they head out the door. A wife so caught up with pleasing her husband leaves the cake in for an extra 30 minutes. For such a mess as we are the author tells us yes, God loves us just as we are, mess and all. I love the humor contained in this book and it makes for such a lighthearted read on such a heavy subject, our souls and eternal salvation. Are we doing it right? Are we measuring up to God's standards? The thing is, God doesn't measure us by standards, he loves us just as we are, each one of us is perfect in our own way. Loved this book!



"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. 
Available at your favourite bookseller from BakerBooks, a division of Baker Publishing Group".


The Fully Lived Life By Merry C. Lin

Do you feel yourself sleepwalking through life? Are you soul weary? Do you long to fully live? So how does one break free from soul depression? Respected psychologist Dr. Lin believes that only biblical truth can wake a sleeping soul to the full life Jesus promised. With her personal experience and powerful therapeutic principles, The Fully Lived Life details the emotional and spiritual steps to finding God beyond, and even in, the chaos of real life. Showing you how to see deeper into your life and relationships, Dr. Lin challenges and encourages you to: • Face the truth of recurring struggles • Stop sabotaging the rich rewards of true love • Begin the journey to the Rescuer’s heart When you finally slow down and take the time to listen to your heart, you will discover the very life you’ve been searching for—a life to the full.
 
 
 
This is not a read in one sitting book. You need to read, reread, absorb and rethink what you read. Apply the challenges to your life and you will find the little steps changing you life in ways you could never imagine. If you are at a point in your life where you feel "stuck" so to speak, that spiritual rut, you're not sure why God allows what he does, you begin to question spiritual things, the author will challenge you to go deeper within and encourage you to live your life as God as promised to you. Live more abundantly that you may feel the joy and peace He has bestowed upon us.

"Book has been provided courtesy of Graf-Martin Communications and author in exchange for an honest review."

2.28.2014

You're Going To Be Ok By Holley Gerth

If your life isn't perfect . . .
If you've ever been disappointed . . .
If you feel stressed or tired . . .
This is for you.
You really are going to be okay. And it truly is possible to live with joy, resilience, and strength no matter what life brings. Yes, there will be hurt and hard times. But God wants to help you find ways to survive, grow stronger, and even thrive--no matter what happens.
With her trademark positive encouragement and probing questions for self-reflection, bestselling author Holley Gerth encourages you to spend less of your life stressing or regretting and more of your life truly living.
I think the title of this book is what we all need to hear. We need to stay focused on who and what we are in Christ. We need to understand that trials and tribulations are a part of the Christian walk but they will not last forever. The author entices the reader and challenges them to exchange their worries and fears in exchange for hope and trust in God. Definitely lifts up your heart and soul in difficult times. I will definitely be sharing this one with friends!
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.  Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 

Shadows Of The Past By Patricia Bradley

While she's stalking the truth . . . someone is stalking her.
Psychology professor and criminal profiler Taylor Martin prides herself on being able to solve any crime, except the one she wants most desperately to solve--the disappearance of her father twenty years ago. When she finally has a lead on his whereabouts, Taylor returns home to Logan Point, Mississippi, to investigate. But as she works to uncover the truth, someone else will do almost anything to keep her from it.
Nick Sinclair pens mystery novels for a living, but the biggest mystery to him is how he can ever get over the death of his wife--a tragedy he believes he could have prevented. Now that his estranged brother is the only family he has left, Nick sets out to find him. But when he crosses paths with Taylor, all he seems to find is trouble.
Join the chase as Taylor and Nick search the murky shadows of the past for the keys to unlocking the present--and moving into a future they never imagined.
Twist, after twist, after twist. That's how the author set the plot of this suspense novel. So many guesses as to who would fall prey. The romance that was thrown in was also a nice touch to the storyline. I feel the story started off a little slow but was well written and composed. This is book 1 in the Logan Point Series. Anxiously awaiting book 2 this fall!!
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.  Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 

2.22.2014

Prepared for a purpose By Antoinette Tuff


870 children waited in fear as their elementary school rushed into lockdown mode. As the nation faced yet another Sandy Hook story of tragedy, one woman rewrote the ending.

Yet the story doesn't start with those first steps Michael Hill took into that Atlanta elementary school. It starts with Antoinette Tuff, a woman who faced her own pain, hurt, and rejection, yet held onto grace, faith, and hope. A hope that anchored her in the most high-stakes moments, a grace that allowed her to empathize with a hurting young man, and a faith that gave her the courage to love him back from the brink.

This is more than just the amazing account of tragedy averted. It's the evidence of what we can do when we allow ourselves to be used by God. And it's a story of how God uses all of our life experiences--the good and the bad--to prepare us for our own moment of divine purpose.

 What a woman of God! Antoinette tells a story, not only of a woman prepared for a purpose, but also raises awareness to mental illness and how serious it is. The things she went through in her life were all preparing her for that fateful day when a young man held her at gunpoint. This sure is a story of a true hero, whos faith in God helped keep her calm and saved the lives of many teachers, staff, students and officers that day. One never knows how strong they are until being strong is the only choice they have. I had never heart of this incident but so very thankful it never escalated into another Sandy Hook or Columbine
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 

No One to Trust By Lynette Eason

She doesn't know who she's running from--and the man she loves may be someone else entirely
Summer Abernathy wakes up one morning to find her husband missing, three men in her home intent on finding him, and the life she's been living based on a lie. Which Kyle Abernathy did she marry? The computer programmer she met in line at the bank? Or the one who was apparently using that image as a cover?
The search for her husband--and answers--takes Summer ever deeper into a world of organized crime where people are used one moment and discarded the next. And with her deepest relationship of trust already shattered, Summer doesn't know who to believe.
Always thrilling, bestselling author Lynette Eason outdoes herself in this taut, breakneck story of lies, loyalties, and love that will have you up all night to discover the truth hidden in the shadows.



If I've never said it before (although I'm sure I have), I will say it now, I LOVE LYNETTE EASON!!! I cannot put her books down, ever! So much actions, suspense, mystery and just when you think you have it all figured out, BAM! The plot thickens again! I've never ever been disappointed by any of her novels, I'm always biting my nails and on the edge of my seat, and sometimes I have to fight myself from skipping ahead to find out what happens lol. This one was all action right at the first page. Imagine marrying someone whom you had no clue who they were and everything up to this point was a lie and now you're on a fast paced adventure running for your life, that's Summer Abernathy. The FBI, CIA, a husband in the WITSEC program, who to trust? Where to turn? This would definitely make a great series! Loved this book!


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.  Available at your favourite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

All Things Hidden By Tracie Peterson & Kimberley Woodhouse

Tracie Peterson and Kimberley Woodhouse Team Up to Deliver a Stunning Depression-Era Drama
Gwyn Hillerman loves being a nurse at her father's clinic on the beautiful Alaskan frontier. But family life has been rough ever since her mother left them, disdaining the uncivilized country and taking Gwyn's younger sister with her.In Chicago, Dr. Jeremiah Vaughan finds his life suddenly turned upside down when his medical license is stripped away after an affluent patient dies. In a snowball effect, his fiance breaks their engagement. In an attempt to bury the past, Jeremiah accepts Dr. Hillerman's invitation to join his growing practice in the isolated Alaska Territory.Gwyn and Jeremiah soon recognize a growing attraction to each other. But when rumors of Jeremiah's past begin to surface, they'll need more than love to face the threat of an uncertain future.

Imagine a nice quiet, settled life in a quaint town with a rewarding career. Now imagine the turmoil and upheaval when people start resettling into your town and changing the balance that always was and falling for a man hired by your Father who has many secrets of his own. Although this tarted off as historical romance it ended in suspense. Not one of my favourites but not a bad read.

 "Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 

Pleasure of His Company By Dutch Sheets

Experience God's Presence in a Whole New Way
There's just something about people who are close to God. Through the ups and downs of life, they remain secure, hopeful. If you want a more rewarding spiritual life, if you want the pleasure of knowing your Creator's heart, this soul-lifting book is for you.

Learn from Dutch Sheets as he shares his life lessons for cultivating an intimate relationship with God. Each of the thirty short chapters reveals a simple practice or biblical mindset that will help draw you away from the noise of life and into the Lord's peaceful presence.

With profound insights from the Bible and stories you won't soon forget, The Pleasure of His Company is like a spiritual mentor, showing you simple ways to enjoy God more.
This powerful book can also be enjoyed as a daily devotional.

I'm so happy I chose to read this book as a daily devotional! It has strengthened my spiritual walk in so many ways and cause me to reflect back on myself and my strengths and weaknesses. I love how the author is so down to earth and don't pretend to live a perfect life, I felt like he was speaking to me in so many instances. There's also a prayer at the end of each chapter along with scripture references. I would definitely recommend this book!
 "Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc. Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group". 

1.26.2014

Pilgrimage: My Journey to a Deeper Faith in the Land Where Jesus Walked By Lynn Austin

We all encounter times when our spirit feels dry, when doubt looms.The opportunity to tour Israel came at a good time. For months, my life has been a mindless plodding through necessary routine, as monotonous as an all-night shift on an assembly line. Life gets that way sometimes, when nothing specific is wrong but the world around us seems drained of color. Even my weekly worship experiences and daily quiet times with God have felt as dry and stale as last year's crackers. I'm ashamed to confess the malaise I've felt. I have been given so much. Shouldn't a Christian's life be an abundant one, as exciting as Christmas morning, as joyful as Easter Sunday?

With gripping honesty, Lynn Austin pens her struggles with spiritual dryness in a season of loss and unwanted change. Tracing her travels throughout Israel, Austin seamlessly weaves events and insights from the Word . . . and in doing so finds a renewed passion for prayer and encouragement for her spirit, now full of life and hope.

Felt like I was on a personal tour of Israel, with just words, no pictures, I had a deeper sense of what it must feel like to be blind. This book opened my eyes in so many ways, and deepened my faith and trust. Sometimes we all go through a spiritual dry spell and we have to remember that whatever we go through is all for His glory, not ours. A great read. Austin paints a vivid picture of the Holy places where Jesus walked.


"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Switch On Your Brain By Dr. Caroline Leaf

You are not a victim of your biology!The vast majority of the illnesses that plague us today are a direct result of our thought life. What we think about truly affects us both physically and emotionally. Today our culture is undergoing an epidemic of toxic thoughts that, left unchecked, create ideal conditions for illnesses.

Supported by current scientific and medical research, Dr. Caroline Leaf gives you a prescription for better health and wholeness through correct thinking patterns. She exposes the "switch" in your brain that will enable you to live a happier, healthier, more enjoyable life where you achieve your goals, get your thought life under control, and even become more intelligent. And her 21-Day Brain Detox Plan guides you step-by-step through the process of replacing toxic thoughts with healthy ones.

Ready to reap the benefits of a detoxed thought life? Read on . . .






Dr. Leaf states "Science is catching up with the Bible daily. How true, because God is THE greatest scientist. He created the heavens, the earth and us in it..." Oh how marvelous! For such a long time science has been fighting the Bible and the scriptures it contained but now people are starting to realize the TRUTH.  We can certainly change our lives by changing the way we think. There are a lot of scripture references to uphold facts and that is something I can appreciate. One can babble on and on about facts and science but if there's no scripture to back it up then it's nothing to me.
It's so amazing to learn how our brains are wired all according to God's plan and purpose!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from BakerBooks, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Fired Up By Mary Connealy

When a doctor who attracts danger falls for a cook determined to make it on her own, there's going to be trouble in Texas!

Glynna Greer came west as a mail-order bride and ended up in a bad situation. Now her husband, Flint, is dead, and she's determined to make a go of it on her own. In a town full of men, Glynna decides she can support her two children by opening a diner--never mind that cooking is not her greatest talent.

Dare Riker is a doctor who saves lives, but someone seems determined to end his. It may have something to do with the traitors he dealt with during the Civil War, or it might be related to the recent incident with Flint Greer and the ranch. Whoever the culprit is, he or she seems really fired up, and Dare can't let his guard down for a moment--which is a challenge, since right now he's trying to win the heart of the recently widowed Glynna.

Though his doctoring business is booming due to Glynna's questionable cooking, Dare seems to encounter unexpected dangers wherever he goes. There's the avalanche. And the fire. And then the shadowy figure with a knife. Can Dare survive it all long enough to convince Glynna to take another chance on love?


A little mystery and romance, even comedy! That's what Connealy has wrapped up in this little package! A great follow up to swept away but with a little more quirkiness. The story flows nicely with the relationship between Glynna and Dare and the trouble that follows Dare and Glynnas lovely cooking lol. I love the values tied to her reads such as the strong message of forgiveness and the importance it carries for the Christian. I do look forward to where the writer will take the characters to, the next level, in the next story

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Available at your favourite bookseller from Bethany House, a division of Baker Publishing Group".

Chasing Hope By Kathryn Cushman

A Touching Story of Two Unlikely Friends.
The Power of Trust.
The Struggle of Pain.
And How, Sometimes, Following God Can Lead You to the Most Unexpected Places.
A talented runner determined to make the Olympics, Sabrina Rice had her dreams shattered by a devastating diagnosis. One forfeited scholarship and several years later, she's forged a new vision for her future that has nothing to do with running, which she's buried deep, intent on forgetting...


Until the day she sees Brandy Philip running across the college campus, easily outpacing security. Sabrina immediately recognizes world class potential, and it's all the more painful that it belongs to a troublemaking teen. When a chance encounter brings the two young women together, Sabrina realizes she's Brandy's best hope to salvage a life about to spiral out of control forever.

I love how the story was told from both characters (Sabrina & Brandy's) point of view. We got to see what each one was experiencing physically and mentally and a glimpse into their struggles and passions. We can also apply the lesson to our daily lives and wait on God and His plans for our lives and not our own.

I did enjoy this book and found out later that it's book number 6 from the Tomorrow's Promise Collection so I will definitely be searching for the previous 5. I thoroughly enjoy Cushman's writing style and the Christian values that are woven into this novel about faith and love. Great read!

I received a copy from the publisher in exchange for an honest review

1.24.2014

Fighter: 5 Keys to Conquering Fear By Manafest

"It's too late it's my fate I can't turn around, there's no fear in the mirror to hold me down"
Musician Chris “Manafest” Greenwood lost his father to suicide at the age of five, and found himself with nothing to cling to but a single mom and his childhood dream of moving to California to become a professional skateboarder. But God had different plans; by the age of 18 Chris fell in love with hip-hop music and quit his corporate job to join the ranks of Toronto’s competitive underground hip hop scene, choosing the name Manafest as a reflection of his goal to manifest his dreams. After years of fighting for success in one of the toughest industries in the world, he found himself living in his dream— a 3-time JUNO award nominee, Top 10 Billboard charted rock artist, living in southern California, selling hundreds of thousands of records worldwide.
Named after his highest charted song, Fighter, this book is the story of how Chris conquered his fears and found success in five stages, which he calls the anatomy of a fighter—courage, perseverance, mindset, discipline, and willpower—the five resources we can all draw on in order to reach our dreams, no matter what they are. The message is simple; we have to replace fear with faith. If God can do something great with a skate punk from Pickering Ontario, imagine what he can do with your life!


Ok, so unlike most people that requested this book, I was not a fan of Manafest, I had barely even heard of Manafest up to this point, but he had a story to tell, and I wanted to hear it. Sometimes we're too harsh to judge people in the spotlight forgetting that we all have our own stories and struggles and pretty much just trying to survive like everyone else. I read this book in a couple hours (Since it's only 166 pages) and learned the spotlight is not all it's cracked up to be. It takes many struggles and sacrifices to get us where we're meant to be, and sometimes where we want to be and where God wants us to be are two totally different places. But it's good to see that despite everything he went through with losing his Father to suicide and his injuries he sustained, he's still serving the living God and putting his insecurities behind him and not letting fear control his life. I urge you to check out his music on you tube. I've included a link to a song I enjoy:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAr_0UyefT0

But this book is more than just Chris Greenwood's life story and rise to fame, this book also teaches us how we can overcome our fears and obstacles that are keeping us from following God's plan for our life. I encourage you to check it out!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Chris Greenwood and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.  Available at your favourite bookseller.

1.03.2014

New Year, New Blessings, New Goals

Hope you all had a great Christmas and a great start to the New Year. God is so good! It's not about what we have physically, but what we have spiritually, our heart and soul is where it counts. I was thinking, what if we were stripped of everything we own, everything we've worked for, house, car, cottage, RV, ATV, iphones, ipads, computers? How would our heart be then? Where will our Faith stand?
Friend, it does not matter how much money you have in the bank, what kind of car you drive or the clothes you wear, what matters is your personal relationship with Christ. You think God looks down and says "Oh, look at that shiny new Corvette!" or "Wow! I love the millions you have in savings!". No my friend, he doesn't. God is no respector of persons, to him we are all his children and are all created equal. God tells us in Matthew 6:19-20
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal."
 So my main goal for the year is this; not to lose 50 lbs (okay that wouldn't hurt), not to save a bunch of money in the bank (okay, I admit that wouldn't hurt either) but my main goal, my focus for 2014 is simply this, to examine myself and my relationship with Christ, to grow into a deeper, meaningful relationship with Him. I want to be an example of God's unending love, mercy and grace and start living what I'm preaching. James 2:26 says

"As the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without deeds is dead".

And God has given me another year, to live fully, alive, right where I am!
How about you?