Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Soaring Above the Circumstances

The year 2002 was a pretty significant year for me.  There were several big things that happened that year, for one, I was diagnosed with Interstitial Cystitis.  A day has not passed since 2002 that I have not been in pain.  Truthfully, I don't like to talk about it.  Most people that know me, don't even know the daily pain I live in.  It is important to me that my sickness not define me, but the truth of the matter is that it is a very real part of my life.  No matter how upbeat I try to stay, there are days, flares, that get the best of me.  On those days I need a little extra prayer, a little extra faith and a little extra encouragement.

Soaring Above the Circumstances by Dean Kilmer is a great book for anyone that is suffering from a chronic illness.  It is an inspirational book that encourages the reader to rise above their circumstances with the help of God.  Just because you are suffering you still can have a purpose.  You can be a blessing to others.  Sometimes we have to shift our focus away from ourselves and on to others.  It's easy to feel sorry for ourselves.  One thing I often say is that there is always, ALWAYS someone who is worse off than me.  The author shares several Bible stories that remind the reader of the sufferings of some great men of God.  These men of God still did great things.  It's not about what we can do, but what God can accomplish through us.

I love how the book is filled with Bible scriptures.  The author did such a great job with this book!  I know I will be referring back to it on those extra rough days that I need a little extra push.  If you have someone who is suffering with a chronic illness, or maybe you are, this is a great book that I would highly recommend.  I believe it will encourage and strengthen you not only in your day to day life, but in your entire walk with Him.

Thank you to the Book Crash blog review program for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.  

If you are interested in purchasing Soaring above the Circumstances you can do so on Amazon by clicking HERE.

Instant Happy Journal - A Book Review

Sometimes we need a little encouragement to keep our minds on positive things.  We all suffer trials and it is easy to focus on the negative areas in our life, but it is so much more beneficial to have a positive outlook.  You feel better both mentally and physically if you look for the good and not constantly see the bad.  

The Instant Happy Journal by Karen Salmansohn is a great little book that will encourage positive thinking.  It is what the title says, a journal.  It is designed to complete within a year.  It has 365 days of inspiration, gratitude and joy.  Each day has what the author calls "happiness prompters"  and then lines for you to record you thoughts.  The happiness prompters include quotes, scientific studies and questions that will get you thinking.  

"Happiness is not a pursuit; it's a perspective."

This journal has bright and colorful pages and designs that are cheerful and pleasant.  The only negative thing that I can say about this journal is that it needs to be a little bigger.  I like to write and I need more space!  

If you are thinking about starting a journal for 2016 this great journal would be a great place to start.  With the structure you will always have a prompt to help you think of something to write.  The bonus, positive thinking!

***Thank you to blogging for books for providing me with this book in exchange for my review.

The Daniel Fast for Weight Loss - A Book Review

As 2015 is coming to an end I once again find myself thinking about the changes I need to make for next year and weight loss is high up on the list.  I had heard of the Daniel Fast before, but knew very little about it.  When I got the chance to review The Daniel Fast for Weight Loss by Susan Gregory for Tyndale Publishing I was excited to learn more about this weight loss method.

The Daniel Fast is a different approach to losing weight.  In fact it is not considered a diet at all, rather a lifestyle change and a journey to getting closer to God.   The goal is to eat foods that God has provided.  Of course, from the title of the fast it is based on Daniel and the facts shared in the Bible about the way he consumed food.  It is to be a spiritual journey with the bonus of losing weight.

The foods that you are to eat during the Daniel fast are only foods grown from seed.  That would include all fruits and vegetables, whole grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, etc.  The only beverage you can drink is water.  No meat, dairy, sweeteners, etc.  It is pretty strict.  Basically nothing pleasant.  It's a good thing it is a spiritual journey because it is going to take lots of prayer to get through 21 days of eating that way. lol

Included in the book is 90 recipes which is an important inclusion for me.  It also includes 21 days of devotions to go along with the fast.  There is a lot of information packed into this book to help you both spiritually and physically through the journey and also tips on how to maintain after the fast is over.

I'm  hopeful that this will be just the thing to jump start a healthy lifestyle for 2016!

***Thank you Tyndale Publishing for providing me this book in exchange for my review.

Monday, December 21, 2015

Mornings With Tozer - A Book Review

Mornings With Tozer is a daily devotional book compiled of 365 devotions that come from sermons that A.W. Tozer preached.  If you are familiar with Tozer you know that his writings are very spiritual and encourage the reader to have a closer walk with God.

It is the perfect way to start your day.  Each devotion includes a scripture reading, a passage from Tozer and ends with a suggested prayer.  The only thing missing is coffee, but you can bring your favorite hot drink while you sit in your favorite chair and you'll have everything you need.  I know in my own personal life that it is very important to start my day out with God.  When I don't I can always tell a difference.  This book gives you a nice structure to follow.

I have read several of Tozer's books and I will say that he always leaves me wanting more of God in my life.  This devotional does the same, but it short little spurts.  You'll reflect all day on the goodness of God and you will be encouraged to pursue God in way you never have before.

One thing that I like about Tozer is that he writes in an educated way.  For me, it requires a slower paced reading.  No skimming through, therefore making me reflect on what I am reading.  I actually even go back and read some of the passages twice.  They are deep and it takes a little extra time for me to really "sink my teeth into it".

I would highly recommend this book to any lover of God!

***Thanks to Moody Publishing for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Letters to A Birmingham Jail - A Book Review

Letters To A Birmingham Jail: A Response to the Words and Dreams of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.  is a compilation of ten different essay/letters written in response to the words that Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.  wrote while in a Birmingham Jail.  Contributes  included are pastors from different types of ethnicity, ages and walks of life.  Some are well known such as John Piper and John Perkins.

It's been more than fifty years ago since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. wrote his letter from a Birmingham Jail.  His original letter in it's entirety is featured in the book and it was my favorite part of the entire book.  We have come a long ways since that time.  A lot of the issues that were present at that time have since been resolved.  Sadly though, there are still issues.  Maybe there always will be.  The past couple years it seems more and more that the cry of racism is being shouted louder and louder. The ten pastors that have writing included in this book, seem to be speaking form the heart of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. himself and would like to see the work that he started completed.

I think this is a great read for people of all walks of life.  The book point directly to Christ and acknowledges that only Christ can bring unity to this world.

Bryan Loritts is the editor of Letters to A Birmingham Jail and I think he had a great idea for this book!  I know that it is something that I will be proud to have on my bookshelf!

***Thank you to Moody Publishers for providing me a copy of this book in exchange for my review.

How to Really Love Your Adult Child - Book Review

It's not hard to find self help books for parenting.  It seems like there is a book for everything when it comes to little kids, but it seems like once your child reaches adulthood you are on your own. As a mother of a twenty-two year old I have found myself questioning my actions on more than one occasion.  Truthfully, I would rather go back to terrible two's or the horrific three's any day.  For me having an adult child has been very challenging and I find myself questioning my "mothering" and on most days I think I have failed miserably.  Of course, there are many things that I would do different if I could go back in time but the fact is, I can't go back.  So I trudge forward and just hope and pray for the best.

How do you manage when on most days you and your adult child don't even like each other?  

I was hoping the book How to Really Love Your Adult Child by Ross Campbell and Gary Chapman would have some magical advice that would solve all our household problems.  The book was not all I hoped it would be, but it did offer some helpful advice and made me understand things from a different perspective.  The book address so many different issues that I am sure that your adult child will fall into one of the categories.  It helped me adjust my expectations and realize that I need to set more boundaries than what I have.  It has renewed my hope in one day having a loving relationship.

Things are so different in the world today compared to when I was young.  The book discusses these differences and how it effects young people today.  A lot of these differences really made me think and realize that today's young adults have a lot more stress and pressure than I did back in the day.

I would definitely recommend this book to others who have children 18-35.  It will give you insight and helpful advice in how to build a healthy relationship in a changing world.

***Thanks to Moody Publishers for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

The Time Chamber - An Adult Coloring Book Review


 I am so excited to tell you about the beautiful adult coloring book that I am working on right now!  It is by Daria Song and is a coloring book that tells a story!   The story is about a tiny fairy who lives inside a cuckoo clock and decides to explore the outside world.  She discovers a human realm where everything is immense and magical.  There are only a few pages that actually have words written on them so it does not take up a lot of coloring space and the pictures themselves tell plenty of story.



As for the pictures...they are so beautifully illustrated!  This book really is a piece of art in itself.  Add your personal touch by coloring the pictures and you make it your own.  The pages are nice and thick.  I love to use a mixture of markers, crayons and colored pencils in my coloring books and the pages are thick enough that the markers do not leak through to the next page.  It comes with a book cover that is also colorable and the book cover itself can be designed with your own creativeness as well!

In the back of the book is a visual index which I though was a great addition.  Instead of flipping through each page to decide what you want to color next you can go to the back of the book and view all the images and decide from there.

Daria Song has one other coloring book called The Time Garden and I am convinced that I must have it as well!  I hope she comes out with a new book for she has a beautiful gift in designing these great coloring books!

***Thanks to Blogging for Books for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

The Midwife's Choice - A Book Review

I am always a little apprehensive when reading a book by a "new to me" author.  The Midwife's Choice by author Delia Parr was such a pleasant surprise.  From the very first page of this well written book I was pulled into the story line and I have become an instant fan of this author!  This book is actually the second book in the At Home in Trinity series.  I did not read the first book and did not feel like it effected the story for me at all.  However, I would like to go back and read it now that I know how much I love this author!

Midwifery is something that has always interested me and the title of the book is what prompted me to read this novel.  If you are not a fan of reading about births I would recommend that you pass on this book.  The births are somewhat detailed.  It is not something that bothers me, but I do know some women that do not like to read such details.

I really love a book that is rich in faith.  This book was very encouraging to me.  Maybe because where I am in my life right now, but there were several things that spoke to my heart.  It is a book that is filled with hope, faith and love.  Our lives change and people, loved one's come and go, but the memories of those can carry us throughout the rest of our lives.


COME HOME TO FRIENDSHIP, FAMILY AND FAITH IN THE TOWN OF TRINITY

FROM THE BACK OF THE BOOK:

In a time when the traditional ways of medicine are constantly being questioned by new doctors fresh from medical school, midwife Martha Cade tries to balance her life's calling with the demands of her family.  Recently reunited with her estranged seventeen year old daughter, Martha finds herself torn between guiding her child and allowing her to be an adult.  At the same time, she must decide whether she'll risk reopening the heart she'd long closed off to love.

Though a small town, Trinity, Pennsylvania, is fraught with secrets, and as a midwife, Martha moves among its people.  she knows which homes are filled with light and live, which families have slipped into grief, which wives are unhappy, and which husbands dare to cross the lines...As Martha struggles with the conflicts of being a mother, a midwife, and a woman, she learns the greatest lessons of all - that hope can shine even in the darkest hours, and that faith has a way of making the impossible possible.

***A special thanks to Bethany House Publishing for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Make Your Own Ugly Christmas Sweater

Ugly Christmas sweater parties are so much fun this time of year, but have you seen the prices on those ugly sweaters?  I don't know about you, but I don't want to pay a high price for an ugly Christmas sweater that will probably only be worn once during what happens to be the most expensive month of the year.

When my daughter's youth group decided to wear ugly Christmas sweaters to the youth Christmas party I knew what I had to do!  Make one!  I'm really not sure who was more excited.  Bethany was super excited about the party and getting to wear an ugly sweater and I was super excited for the chance to make one.  I have had this idea for a while now, but never had a reason to make it!

Bethany actually found out that she was going to be able to go the party a day before the actual event.  She was originally supposed to work that evening, but plans changed.  We made a quick trip to Goodwill and Dollar General for supplies.
At Goodwill we found a men's green shirt.  We wanted something pretty large because I knew we would need something big for the hoop at the bottom.  For the hoop I used an old canopy I had.  You know the kind, the one's for a little girls bedroom covered with tulle.  Anyway, I sewed the hoop in using the sewing machine and we hot glued the rest of the items in place.  We had some gold garland and some ugly ornaments all purchased at Dollar General.  With the shirt costing $3.00 and the Garland and ornaments totaling $5.00 I was able to complete the whole project for under $10.00.

It turned out super ugly and she won first prize!

On our way there she had to ride in the back seat because the hoop was so big and and she was not able to put the shoulder seat belt on.  Don't worry, I was still parked when I took the pic!
We had to make a quick run into Walmart.  This picture may end up on the people of Walmart site.  I mean really..who goes shopping dressed like a tree?  But hey, if people can wear pajamas to Walmart...

We had five different people approach us and compliment her ugliness.  In fact several one person started by saying "you won"!  They were right!



Monday, December 14, 2015

The Forgotten Recipe - A Book Review

The Forgotten Recipe is by Amy Clipston and is the first book in An Amish Heirloom Series.  In The Forgotten Recipe Veronica Fisher is engaged to marry her best friend Seth.  He is hardworking, kind and handsome and they are so in love, but when tragedy strikes and Seth falls to his death while on his construction job, Veronica is left devastated.

Veronica is certain that she will never love again and fills her days with as many chores as possible to keep her mind off of her heartache.  When she discovers an old chest in the attic that is full of forgotten recipes that belonged to her grandmother, she is excited for the first time since Seth passed.  She decides to sell the bake goods and it is not long before she has a regular customer that begins making her heart feel things she didn't think she could feel anymore.

Jason was with Seth when he died.  Seth was Jason's best friend and the memory of Seth's death haunt Jason.  He decides to seek out Seth's fiance Veronica.   He feels like he knows her already since Seth talked about her so much and he wants to help her during her time of grief.  The last thing that Jason expects is to fall in love.  As he becomes a regular customer at Veronica's bake stand, their feelings for each other begin to grow.  Will everything change when Veronica finds out that Jason watched her beloved Seth fall to his death?

This is not the first book I have read by Amy Clipston and I am sure it won't be the last.   I always enjoy her Amish fiction stories and this one was one of my favorites to date.  The story captivated me from the beginning and all of the characters were well developed and easy to relate to.  I can't wait to read the next book in this series!

***Thanks to booklookbloggers.com for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Every Little Thing - Adult Coloring Book Review

Adult coloring books are all the rave right now.  First, let me state that I hate that they are called "adult coloring books".  It sounds like an x-rated coloring activity that you will need to hide from your kids.  Not sure what I would call them, but I have been a little slow on getting on board with this new fad.  When I got the chance to review "Every Little Thing" I thought it was as good as time as any to see what all the craze is about.


Now that I have tried it, I completely understand why this is such a popular thing right now.  I really enjoyed coloring.  It is just as they say...very relaxing.  I am someone who has to keep busy even when I am watching television in the evenings, so coloring is a great way to keep myself busy without really being busy at all.  It's a great way to unwind!  

Every Little Thing is a nice coloring book that lives up to its name.  It has just about every little thing within the 74 coloring pages.  It has  kaleidoscope type pictures and they are fun.  I liked that the images weren't too tiny.  I've looked at several adult coloring books and some of them have really tiny images.  This one seemed just right.  The pages are nice and thick and I used a mixture of markers, crayons and colored pencils.  The markers did not leak through which is a big plus for me since markers are my favorite!  It has a book cover, and the cover of the book itself can also be colored.

I only found a couple negatives.  A lot of the images go to the middle and due to the binding you cannot really color these images.  I think it would of been nice to have a spiral bound book, or perhaps don't print the pictures all the way to the middle.  The other thing is that it is a bit repetitive.  A lot of the pages have the same thing over and over.  For instance, all though an armadillo could be fun to color more than 50 is a little weird.

Overall, I enjoyed this book and I now have a new hobby!

Thanks to bloggingforbooks.com for providing me with a copy of this book in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, November 30, 2015

The Midnight Visitors - A Book Review

The Midnight Visitors is a children's story book by Juliet David and is Illustrated by Jo Parry.  It is a beautifully written story about the birth of Jesus!  And just in time for Christmas!

The story is about Miriam the cow.  As Miriam is settling in for the night in her nice cozy cowshed, she is interrupted by a knock on the door.  First it is a family of rabbits, then a fox and next an owl all wanting a cozy place to rest.  Miriam is reluctant, but she lets them all in.  One last knock on the door brings a man and a woman who is with child.  Before long there is a new baby and Miriam will never forget this night that a very special baby was born in her very own cowshed.

Our children our never too young to learn the story of Christ and Christmas is an excellent time to begin to tell them of our wonderful Savior who came to this earth as a baby.  This sweet book is sure to keep the attention of young children.  The pictures are so cute and bright and colorful!  

This would make the perfect Christmas gift.  What a sweet tradition it would be to have a quiet moment on Christmas day to share with your child the real reason for the season!

***This book was provided to me by Kregel in exchange for my review.

Friday, November 27, 2015

The Mountain Midwife - A Book Review

The Mountain Midwife by Laurie Alice Eakes was a little different than what I thought it would be.  I really thought I was getting a historical fiction book.  Instead it turned out to me a modern day story.  Even though there was an initial disappointment it did not take long for me to get over it.  It was a well written book and caught my interest from the first chapter.  The characters are well developed and easy to connect with.

This was the first book I read by this author, but from what I understand this author has written a whole series on midwives and those are set more in the past.  It's also said that some of the characters from the previous stories are mentioned in this book.  I would like to go back and read The Midwives Series.  If they are half as good as this book I know I will love it!

Ashley Toliver is a midwife in a small Appalachian community.  She comes from a long line of midwives and through the years she thinks she has seen it all.  One night a man knocks on her door, he has a pregnant woman with him who is in labor.   Ashley feels like something is off, but it is clear that this lady needs help so she lets them in.  After the birth, the mother starts bleeding dangerous amounts and Ashley knows she must get her to a hospital quick.   As she is making the arrangements the woman, the baby and the man that brought her all disappear.  Upon further discovery it seems as if this was a planned abduction.  Ashley is determined to find the women and her baby before it is too late.

Hunter McDermott has found himself in the lime light.  He is being seen as a hero for being in the right place at the right time.  He receives a phone call from a mysterious woman who seen him on the news and is claiming to be his mother.  When he finds out from his mom and dad that he is adopted he starts out on a quest to find his birth mother.  He seeks help for Ashley Toliver.  Ashley had no idea on man could turn her world upside down.  He has her questioning her plans for her future and now she doesn't know what she wants.

***This book was provided to me by booklookbloggers in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

The Christmas Story in 40 Days - A Book Review

Each year as Christmas approaches I try to find a good devotional book that focuses on the true meaning of Christmas.   It is so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the season, but Christmas is so much more than lights, trees and presents.

For me, it is important to prepare my heart for this special time of year.  I love to spend a few moments each day with my family and focus and what Christmas really is about.  It strengthens us as a family and it also strengthens our walk with God.

This year I am reading The Christmas Story in 40 Days and it is exactly the kind of devotional book I like for this time of year.  The author suggests starting the book on November 15'th so it will take you all the way through the Christmas season, but that is just a suggestion.

As the title suggests, the book contains 40 daily devotions.  Each Day consists of a scripture, a short devotion sharing thoughts on what you just read and then there are questions that get you thinking and help you apply everything you just read to your own life.  It even includes a few blank lines for notes in case you want to jot down anything.  I really liked the addition of a "note" section.  It's a perfect place to write down some of your thoughts, or those of your family's as you discuss the questions. This will make it all the more personal and a great memory to look back on next Christmas!

Even though I have chosen to use this book for our family devotion time this season I think that it is the perfect book for individuals.  However you choose to use it, I think that you will enjoy it and it will help you remain focused on Christ during this very special time of year!

***Thanks to Aneko Press for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

If you would like to purchase a copy of The Christmas Story in 40 days you can do so on Amazon by clicking HERE.

Delighting in God - A Book Review

I never pass up an opportunity to read a book by A.W. Tozer.  He was such an awe inspiring man of God. he had so much wisdom of the Bible and things above that it is astounding.  Delighting in God is a follow up to The Knowledge of the Holy.  It is a book that will take you to deeper depths in your walk with God and I think it will give each reader the desire to know God in way they never have before.  I couldn't help but think of the old song "I Was Made to Serve the Lord" while reading this.  Our whole purpose in this life is to serve Him.  To do that to the best of my ability I must come to know Him on a new level.

UNDERSTAND YOUR LIFE'S PURPOSE BY BETTER UNDERSTANDING GOD

"My worship grows and grows as my perception of God grows.  God cannot grow.  My perception of God grows and I experience Him day after day.  I should be more capable of worshiping God today than I was ten or twenty years ago." 

We were all created in the image of God and to fully understand who we are and what we were created to be we must first come to understand God so that he can work through us.

Delighting in God is the message Tozer intended to be the follow up to The Knowledge of the Holy.  He demonstrated how the attributes of God - those things God has revealed about himself - are a way to understand the Christian life of worship and service.  We are here to serve and adore him, but we can only fulfil that role by acknowledging who he is, which is the essence of the Christian life and the source of all our fulfillment, joy and comfort.

About the Author
A.W. Tozer (1897-1963) was a self-taught theologian, pastor, and writer whose powerful words continue to grip the intellect and stir the soul of today's believer. He authored more than 40 books. The Pursuit of God and The Knowledge of the Holy are considered modern devotional classics. Find Tozer information and quotes at tozeraw@twitter.com.

Reverend James L. Snyder is an award-winning author recognized as an authority on the life and ministry of A.W. Tozer. His first book, In Pursuit of God: The Life of A.W. Tozer, won the Christianity Today Reader's Choice Award. Because of his thorough knowledge of Tozer, he was given the rights from the A.W. Tozer estate to produce new books derived from over 400 never-before-published audio tapes. James and his wife live in Ocala, Florida.
***This book was provided to me by Bethany House Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

Amish Christmas At North Star - A Book Review


When the weather turns cold I want nothing more than to cuddle up with a blanket, a cup of coffee and a good book.  Unfortunately this time of year it seems that there is never enough time.  As the holidays approach I find my days going by fast and my calendar quickly filling up.  One good solution is reading short stories.  

Amish Christmas at North Star is the perfect book to curl up with.  It is compiled of four short stories all centering around Christmas and they are short enough where each story is a quick read and you can still get other things accomplished!

One night four babies were born.  They were all delivered by the same Amish midwife on the edge of North Star, Pennsylvania.  The babies, who are called Rebekah's babies, are now adults.  Each novella features a different person that was delivered by Rebekah years earlier.

The first story is called Guiding Star and is by Katie Ganshert.  Chase Wellington is an Englischer who, after learning of the four births decides to investigate.  One of the babies disappeared shortly after the birth and he is determine to find out what happened.   His investigation leads him to Elle McAllister and it's not long before everything is brought to light.

The second story is Mourning Star by Amanda Flower.  Eden decides to investigate the death of her friend Isaac.  There are several possibilities of who the guilty person is.  Will Eden be able to uncover the truth?

The third story is In The Stars by Cindy Woodsmall.  Kore does his best to avoid North Star ever since his heart was broken by Savilla.  Now he has to return home and the one person he has been avoiding is now the person who he needs.

The fourth story is Star of Grace by Mindy Starns Clark and Emily Clark.  Andy left North Star to join a new Amish settlement in Mississippi.  His whole family misses him him, but none more than his little brother who devises a plan to bring Andy home for Christmas.

I really enjoyed all of these stories and even found myself wishing a couple of them were a little longer.  Even though they are short stories, the characters are well developed and easy to connect with!  A must read for this Christmas season!

*This book was provided to me through bloggingforbooks.com in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, November 16, 2015

The Girl From the Train - A Book Review

When it comes to reading there is nothing I like more to read than a good historical fiction book.  I love it when I find an author who has weaved a beautiful fiction story mixed together with true historical facts.  Some authors seem to go the extra mile and bring a story that pulls at your heart strings and tears at your soul.  The Girl From the Train by Irma Joubert is just such a story.

I new as soon as I seen the cover and read the back excerpt that this book would be good, and I was not disappointed.  It is one of those books that you don't want to put down.  The kind that when you do have to put it down you are thinking about it and rushing around just so you can sit down and read it again.

I would highly recommend this book to anyone who loves historical fiction!  It is a great story of love, hope and faith.  This book will be going on my list of favorites!

More about the book:

As World War II draws to a close, Jakob fights with the Polish resistance against the crushing forces of Germany and Russia.  They intend to destroy a German troop transport, but Gretl's unscheduled train reaches the bomb first.

Gretl is the only survivor.  Though spared form the concentration camp, the orphaned German Jew finds herself lost in a country hostile to her people.  When Jakob discovers her, guilt and fatherly compassion prompt him to take her in.  For three years, the young man and the little girl form a bond over the secrets they must hide from his Catholic family.

But Gretl can't stay with him forever.  Jakob send her to South Africa, where German war orphans are promised bright futures with adoptive Protestant families, so long as Gretl's Jewish roots, Catholic education and connections to communist Poland are never discovered.

Separated by continents, politics, religion, language and years, Jakob and Gretl will likely never see each other again.  But the events they both survived and their believe that the human spirit can triumph over the ravages of war have formed a bond of love that no circumstances can overcome.

***This book was provided to me by booklookbloggers.com in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Rising Darkness - A Book Review

Sophie Wittenbauer grew up in a conservative Mennonite community.  Unlike the good citizens of her town, she lived under the abusive hand of her parents.  She made some horrible choices and disappointed a lot of people in the town of Kingdom, but that is all behind her now.  She left her old miserable life behind and has started a new life for herself.  She is now an aspiring crime reporter and hoping to get a "big story" and make a name for herself.  When Sophie receives a tip on an unsolved case, she heads to Sanctuary, Missouri in search of a murderer and $6,000,000 in missing cash.

Once in Sanctuary she goes undercover and uses the name Emily.  She is not thrilled to be in a Mennonite town and it seems that more than just memories of her old life are surfacing.  When she runs in to Jonathan, the only man she has ever loved, she is taken back.  He is now a pastor in Sanctuary.  He has a hard time believing Sophie, but chooses to help her anyway.  It also seems that someone is on to "Emily".  When she begins receiving threats and then is attacked, she is not sure who to trust anymore.  As she is trying to find the murderer she begins to find herself and the healing that she so desperately needed.

Rising Darkness is the third book in the Finding Sanctuary series by Nancy Mehl.  You do not have to read the series in order, but I do think you would find it more enjoyable.  Since each story is set in Sanctuary, MO you get to know and connect with many of the town folk and it is nice to see glimpses of their lives in each book.  Sophie's story in Rising Darkness is a story of healing and forgiveness.  I love how Nancy Mehl can write a book with a great balance of faith, suspense and romance.  One of the things I love most about this author's books is that she is actually located very close to where I live and the towns on the outskirts of Sanctuary are real towns and towns that I am in on a regular basis.  That is just a really cool aspect for me.

I did have a little more trouble with this third book than I did the first two.  It took me a while to get into and connect with it.  I didn't feel like it was as good as the first two, however, it was still enjoyable and by the last half of the book I couldn't put it down.  It just took me a while to get to that point.

***Thanks to Bethany House Publishing for providing me with the book in exchange form my honest review.


Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Christmas Time - A Book Review

Some of my most cherished childhood memories are of the stories and the time spent with my mother as she read to me before bedtime.  It was such a special time that me and my sister both looked forward to.  When I became a mother I quickly took on the tradition.  I have always enjoyed reading and I do believe it is in huge part due to the hours spent being read to as a child.

Teaching young children about Christ is one of the most beneficial things you can do for them.  It is never too early to start.  One of the best ways of teaching them about Jesus is through story books.  Christmas Time:  It's All About Jesus!  Written by Sue M. Barksdale is the perfect book to start with.  It is beautifully illustrated with bright colorful cartoon images that capture the story of the birth of Jesus through pictures.  Even the youngest of children will enjoy looking at these fun images.  The story itself is told in rhymes and does not stray from the truth of the birth of Christ.

The thing I liked most was the Christmas Time Devotions that were included in the back of the book.  This is a very unique inclusion that helps families center their Christmas around the true meaning.  Included with each short devotion is a short prayer and family activities.  This makes it fun for the whole family.

I am confident that your family will enjoy spending time together with your little ones while reading this great Christmas book!

If you would like to purchase Christmas Time you can do so on Amazon by clicking HERE.

A special thanks to Aneko Press for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

A Reason To Stay - A Book Review

A Reason To Stay by Kellie Coates Gilbert is a modern day novel about Faith Marin who is the host of a television news show.  Her marriage to pro bass fisherman Geary is on the rocks.  Faith is ready to call it quits and file for divorce.  As she heads out to do an "on location" news story, the unexpected happens.  As tragedy strikes Faith's own life hangs in the balance she begins to realize that she can't bear to lose the one person that she needs most.

This book reminded me of an old favorite movie of mine.  "Up Close and Personal" starring Robert Redford.  I was definitely intrigued with the story line.  I don't read a whole lot of modern day novels, but I am glad that I gave this one a shot.  I really did enjoy it and the characters and the story line was so relatable.  The story goes back and forth between present day and Faith remembering when she met her husband, started her career and the events that lead up to where she is now in life.  Faith's in-laws are overbearing and her mother-in-law interferes in her son's life causing so many problems for Faith.  I think this was the most realtable aspect of the story, for me anyway.

This is a great story of love and fighting for what you want.  Sometimes the easiest thing to do is give up, but somethings...some people are worth the fight.  A great read that I would definitely recommend!

***This book was provided to me by Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

The Christmas Joy Ride - A Book Review

As summer turns into fall and the days become cooler, it doesn't take long for my mind to shift to Christmas.  One of the things I enjoy this time of year, before things get to hectic with the holiday season, is reading Christmas novels.

I just completed The Christmas Joy Ride by Melody Carlson.  It is a joyous tale of and elderly lady by the name of Joy is eighty-five years old and her sons have made arrangements for her to go into assisted living housing closer to their location.  Joy has sold her house and is supposed to fly out to her new life in time for Christmas, but Joy has another idea.  She is going to take her RV across route 66 spreading joy all along the way.

Miranda is Joy's next door neighbor.  Her life is falling apart.  Her husband is gone, her house is being forclosed and celebrating Christmas is the last thing she has on her mind.  Joy convinces (more like guilts) Miranda into joining her on her joy ride.  It's not long before Miranda is enjoying herself and through the kindness of Joy she starts seeing things differently then she has in a long time.  This joy ride will do more than bring Miranda joy, it will change her life!

I really did enjoy this book and if I were to be completely honest, I was a little skeptical when I first got the book.  By the looks of it I thought it would be a silly novel, but instead it was a beautiful tale of generosity and happiness.  Joy is a spunky old lady that you can't help but love!   It is a quick read and once you start you won't want to put it down.

If you are looking for a quick Christmas book that is sure to put a smile on your face, then this is the book for you!

***This book was provided to me by Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Pumpkin Decorating

Sometimes I wonder how I managed to do anything creative before Pinterest.  It was the first place I looked when I found out our church was having a pumpkin decorating contest at our annual fall festival.  There were so many creative ideas and it was hard to narrow down our choices, but we finally decided on a gumball machine, movie theater popcorn and Superman.  I think they turned out great and the popcorn won first place!






Batman vs. Superman
Bethany's friend made a Batman pumpkin!

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Vendetta - A Book Review

I have not been reading action/suspense novels for very long, and I find myself wondering why it took me so long to pick up this genre of books.  I really enjoyed Vendetta by Lisa Harris.  I have to say it was probably a little more edgy than what I am used to.  It doesn't take much to get me spooked and since I do most of my reading at night I found it rather difficult to fall asleep after reading about serial killers and kidnappers.  On the other hand, I was losing sleep anyway because I did not want to put the book down.  It captivated me and had me on the edge with page turning suspense.  There is plenty of action, suspense and even a touch of romance.

Nikki and Tyler are spending the day together in remembrance of Katie, Nikki's best friend and Tyler's late wife.  It marks the one year anniversary of Katie's death, but their day together soon takes a shocking turn.
Nikki Boyd works for Tennessee's Missing Person Task Force.  Ten years ago Nikki's sister Sarah was kidnapped by the angel abductor.  There were other girls kidnapped and they were all killed, but Sarah's body has never been found, leaving Nikki's family wondering if she is still out there somewhere.  Nikki has so much guilt and has spend the last ten years studying missing cases.  When a 16 year old girl is kidnapped Nikki is called onto the case.  Nikki quickly begins to see the similarities between this case and her sisters case.  The deeper she gets into the investigation the more it seems like this is a personal attack on her.  As she gets closer to finding the abductor her very life is in danger as long with everyone around her.  Will she be able to stop this madman and how many people will lose their lives in the process?

This is such a well written book.  It had me caught up in the story from the very first chapter.  The characters are well developed and easy to connect with.  It also serves as a reminder to teach your children the dangers of talking to strangers online and the danger of abductors.

***Thanks to Revell publishing for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.


Saturday, October 24, 2015

When Love Returns - A Book Review

If I had to pick one christian fiction author as a favorite it would be Kim Vogel Sawyer, no contest.  She has such a gift of writing beautiful faith based fiction novels.  As I read her books I always get so drawn in, that it becomes so much more than just a story.  Her books have a way of ministering to my soul and encouraging me in my own walk with Christ.

Kim Vogel Sawyers latest novel When Love Returns is the third book in The Zimmerman Restorations Trilogy.  I would definitely recommend reading these books in order.   To fully appreciate When Love Returns you need to start at the beginning.

Suzanne Zimmerman was sent away as a young teen when her mother found out she was pregnant.  It hasn't been an easy life for Suzanne, but the hardest challenge she faced was when she returned to her Amish community and family.  When Love Returns continues Suzanne's story.  As Suzanne and Paul's biological daughter is planning her wedding, Paul and Suzanne are being drawn together and once again sparks are flying, but has too much happened between them for these two to rekindle their love?

Then there is Alexa.  She is heading back to Indianapolis and is in search for her biological parents.  Is she ready for what she will find?  Can Alexa and Suzanne trust in God to work all things out?

The whole story comes to an end in a beautiful way.  Complete closure, no loose ends.  Perfect ending, perfect series!

***This book was provided to me by bloggingforbooks.com in exchange for my honest review.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

Murder at the Courthouse - A Book Review

Murder at the Courthouse is the first book I have read by A.H. Gabhart.  More and more lately I find myself enjoying a good christian suspense novel.  I was excited to read Murder at the Courthouse, but the excitement soon turned to disappointment.  The book was not quite what I expected.  The first couple chapters caught my attention, but the further I got into the story my interest began to dwindle.  It was quite obvious who committed the crime.  I like a good "who-done-it" mystery that keeps you guessing until the end.  There were parts of the story that seemed pointless to me and I was really disappointed in the ending.  I think next time I will pass on this author and stick to one of my more trustworthy suspense writers that I have come to love.

More about the book:

Michael Keane has left his days as a Columbus police officer and moved to the quiet town of Hidden Springs.  Even while working in the big city he did not have to work very many murder cases.  When a body is discovered on the courthouse steps, Michael finds himself in search of a killer.  Everyone in the small town seems to have a theory and all of them want in on the action.  Who is the man who was murdered and who is the murderer?  Will Michael be able to find the killer before anyone else gets hurt?

Even though I found the book slow paced and predictable it seems that a lot of people have given the book 5 stars.  If you are a fan of A.H. Gabhart's writings I would say your opinion may differ from mine, so read a few more reviews and make your choice!

***This book was provided to me by Revell publishing in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

The Bishop's Son - A Book Review

The Bishop's Son is the second book in the Amish of Bee County series.  I loved the first book and I think this one is even better!  The author, Kelly Irvin does a superb job in writing Amish fiction.  This book would make a great stand alone book book, but I would definitely recommend reading the first book too.  I really enjoyed getting glimpses into the lives of the characters I got to know in the first book and to read about Abigail and Mordecai's wedding was great!

The main character in this story is Leila, Abigail's daughter.  Leila finds herself torn between two men.  She must decide, but will she follow her heart or her head?  Two very different choices.  One she will remain with her faith, one she will not.

First there is Jesse Glick.  Leila has loved Jesse from the first time she saw him, but Jesse's feeling remain unclear.  He is wishy washy to say the least.  He sends Leila mixed messages.  He wants to court her, but he is struggling with his faith and is not sure it is fair to Leila for them to start a relationship, plus he has a secret that he is not ready to share.  He begins introducing her to other things, such as movies and cars and the things that the English life has to offer.

 Then there is Will.  Will is Jesse's cousin and has been keeping his feeling to Leila to himself.  Will is more grounded and knows that he is ready to commit his life and future to the Amish lifestyle.  He is hesitant to make his feelings to Leila known since his cousin has feelings for her as well.

Who will Leila choose.  Her faith?  Her heart?  Will she find true happiness in her choice?  You must read to find out!

***Thanks to booklookbloggers.com for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Forgiven - A Book Review

Forgiven:  The Amish School Shooting, A Mother's Love, and A Story of Remarkable Grace is written by Terri Roberts, the mother of the Amish School house shooter.  In October of 2006 Charlie Roberts went into an Amish School house and shot 10 young girls, killing five and also killed himself.

Most people are very familiar with this story.  You may remember hearing about it on the news when it happened, or read a book about it or even seen the movie.   Maybe you're like me and all of the above apply to you.  I was pretty sure I knew all there was to know about this heart wrenching event, but this book takes you too a more personal level.  Written by the shooters mother, Terri shares insight into the shooters life as a child and the story told from her eyes.  There are sections that Amish have contributed and I really enjoyed those first hand stories as well.

This is a story about forgiveness.  It is a story about love.  Forgiveness is sometimes a journey and it is not always easy, but without forgiveness one cannot heal.

I can't imagine being the mother of someone who committed such a crime.  I admire Terri Robert's bravery in writing this book and sharing her story. It is very well written and pulls at the heart strings of the reader.  There is much to learn about forgiveness within the pages of this book and I believe that the reader will learn so much about God's love within the pages.

***Thanks to Bethany House Publishing for providing me with this book in exchange for my review.

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Streams of Mercy - A Book Review

Streams of Mercy by Lauraine Snelling is the third book in the Song of Blessing series.  I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I get when Lauraine Snelling comes out with a new book about the town of Blessing!  She has written nineteen books (compiled into 5 series) about the Bjorkland family and the people of Blessing and I never tire of this family that I have come to love!  When I get a new book I devour it!  It's like getting a letter from home.  There are a only a handful of books that have made me cry while reading them and a couple of them have been Lauraine Snelling books about Blessing.  I am so connected with this family that when something happens, it's like it is happening to my family.

One great thing about Lauraine's books is that you don't necessarily have to start from the very beginning.  She writes her novels in such a way that you don't feel lost.  The first book I read was from the Daughter's of Blessings series.  I loved it so much and became so interested in the family that I when I learned that it was a part of a bigger story I just had to go back and start from the beginning.  So even though this book is a great stand alone story I would encourage you, if you have not already read the rest of the books, to go back to the beginning.  I don't think you will be sorry!

Each book usually features a different characters life, but one thing I love about these books is that even though the story may focus primarily on a certain character, there is plenty story dedicated to the rest of the town and to the matriarch of the whole series, Ingaborg Bjorkland.  It really is an ongoing story of the Bjorkland family and the people of the town of Blessing, but with each book you get to know certain characters a little better.

In Streams of Mercy Anji Baard Moen, has returned from Norway after the death of her husband.  Blessing has always been home to her and she is settling into life.  She is now teaching and writing articles for the town newspaper.   Two men are working their way into her heart.  Who will she choose.

There was an unexpected tragedy in this book and let me tell you, I needed tissues.  I didn't see it coming and I don't want to give any spoilers away...but, wow, I didn't expect it!  Thank you so much Lauraine Snelling for another beautifully written story!  I can't wait for the next book!

***Thanks to Bethany House Publishing for providing me with Streams of Mercy in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, October 9, 2015

The Imposter - A Book Review

Suzanne Woods Fisher is well known for her Amish novels and I have read a number of her previous novels. The Imposter is the first book of a new series entitled The Bishop's Family.

The Imposter has definitely not made my "favorite book" list. It wasn't a bad book by any means, but it is very slow paced and there are multiple story lines each told from a different character's point of view. There were a couple story lines that I connected better with than the others and I would of preferred the author write more about these. Also, the multiple character's/story lines were a little confusing in the beginning. Sometimes when it would switch to a different story line, I found myself thinking "who is this". Maybe it was harder for me to keep track of some of the character's because I wasn't connecting with all of them.

I tend to do most of my reading at night, laying in bed with a book light. It's nothing for me to read well into the morning hours, but this book found me struggling to stay awake. About half way through it did pick up some for me, but I have to say, I was never 100% sure who the Imposter was and I'm not really sure who The Bishop is. I'm sure the series is about David's family, but there were other Bishop's and...well yeah, I was confused.

I'll touch on a couple of the story lines that I liked the best.

Katrina Stoltzfus lost her mother in a buggy accident and she just found out that John, the boy she loves, is marrying someone else. Reeling from grief she is obviously depressed. She agrees to stay with a widow to help her out with her business. She thinks it will be a good time to heal and possible find a way back into John's heart before he marries. Andy Miller has been hired at the widow's farm to help out as well and Andy and Katrina become instant friends and Katrina begins wondering if she could be developing feeling for Andy. There is a lot of mystery surround Andy and she does not want to be hurt again.

David is Katrina's father. He is still mourning the death of his wife and trying to do his best to raise his five children. David felt lead by God to go to Stony Ridge to help Bishop Elmo, but when the Bishop dies another minister, Freeman Glick gets appointed as new Bishop and Freeman and David disagree on many things, mainly the fact that Freeman wants to let down on their rules to prevent young people from leaving the Amish community.

Then there is Birdy. Birdy is my favorite character. She has her heart set on David, but every time she is around him she turns in to a clumsy mess. She is the new school teacher and her experiences in the class room are a joy to read.

If you like Amish fiction you may want to give this series a shot. Just because it wasn't one of my favorites, doesn't mean you won't find it enjoyable.

***Thank you to Revell for providing me with The Imposter in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, October 2, 2015

A Heart's Home - A Book Review

A Heart's Home is book six in Colleen Coble's Journey of the Heart's Series. There are six books in this series and in this book you will read the conclusion of our story thus far.  This series is the first that Colleen Coble wrote.  These books have not been available for 10 years, but now fans of this author have the chance to read her first work.

All six books are quick and easy reads.  All the books are around 100 pages.  This makes it very convenient for busy days, but what I don't like about it is that you have to wait until you get the next book and sometimes that leaves you hanging.  I would definitely encourage buying all six books, that way you can read the complete story without delay.  I do wish that instead of 6 books this series would be set up as one or two books. 

Each book starts where the last one ended and A Heart's Home concludes the story.   Emmie and Isaac are planning their marriage, but Emmie has still not shared her secret with Isaac.  When an unexpected tragedy happens to one of Emmie's dear friends, she must honor a promise she made even though it will cost her own happiness.  On top of that, the Indians are attacking and everyone at Fort Laramie is in danger.  Will Emmie's heart ever find a home?  

Along with Emmie's story we get to continue on with Luke and Sarah and the birth of their baby.  It was a good ending to this series and all of the characters that I have gotten to know had closure to their stories.  What I didn't like, is that the author never shared Emmie telling Isaac "the secret" and what his reaction was.  The last three books have revolved around the secret and then at the end it was just forgotten.  That frustrated me.

At times you can tell that this is Colleen Coble's first work.  She has definitely perfected her writing style through the years, but for her first work, I feel like the series was well done and I enjoyed reading it!  

***This book was provided to me by the publisher through the booklook blog review program in exchange for my honest review.

Monday, September 28, 2015

Taming the To-Do List - Book Review

Do you ever wish there were a few extra hours in the day.  Do you ever feel like you will never get your ever growing to-do list completed.  You're probably constantly adding to it and most of the time left feeling drained and inadequate.  I'm sure that most moms can relate.  Trying to juggle everything can be exhausting.  Glynnis Whitwer's book is a great resource in helping any busy person prioritize their life.  I have to say I was a little skeptical at first.  I mean, for a busy person to stop what they are doing and read a book about to-do lists...wouldn't their time be better spent working on completing their list rather than spending time reading about it.   

The author is right on target with this book.  She shares practical advice and lessons that she has learned.  She discusses procrastination, prioritizing and so much more.   We feel like we have to answer every email, text, tweet and facebook comment and many times we put off doing the really important stuff and  at the end of the day we beat ourselves up and feel inadequate.  This book gives so much helpful advice on taking back your schedule and focusing on doing your best work rather than hurrying through just to mark it off the list.  

Even if you are super busy I think it would be well worth your time to sit down and read Taming the To-Do List.  A matter of fact if you are super busy you NEED this book!  Not only will you feel refreshed and uplifted you will have so many helpful pointers to help you be the best you, you can be each and everyday!  

***This book was provided to me by the publisher in exchange for my honest review!

Ties That Bind - A Book Review

When it comes to Amish fiction Cindy Woodsmall is my favorite author.  I have read all of her books and she never disappoints!  Her newest book, Ties That Bind, may be the best yet!  It is the first book in The Amish of Summer Grove series and I absolutely loved it.

The books starts out in an Amish birthing center where one women has just given birth and another is about to, when a fire breaks out.  It's complete chaos.   The story then jumps forward 20 years and we get to know Ariana Brenneman, a sweet Amish girl who loves her family and the Amish life.  Her family has always struggled financially and she longs to help them out by starting a cafe.  Her twin brother Abram is helping her raise the money.

Quill Schlabach left the Amish five years ago when he ran off with Ariana's best friend Frieda.  Ariana was devastated and still struggles with bitterness.  When she unexpectedly runs into him she knows he is there to help someone she loves leave the Amish community.  Ariana is desperate to protect her family and devises a plan of her own.

Despite how it looks, Quill has spent his life protecting Ariana and when her parents come to him for help he begins to learn of a secret surrounding Ariana that will turn her life upside down.  They are finally moving forward and forming a friendship and his involvement with "the secret" can destroy everything that they have rebuilt.

The book is fairly predictable at times, but that did not take anything away from it for me.  The characters are well developed and despite everything that has happened between Ariana and Quill I couldn't help but root for their relationship.  If I had to find one negative thing about this book it would be that I have to wait for the next book to see what happens next!  I seriously can't wait!  There are so many unanswered questions I have about this story and I can't wait to see what happens next in the lives of the characters I have already come to love.

***This book was provided to me by bloggingforbooks.com in exchange for my honest review.

The Memory Weaver - A Book Review

The Memory Weaver by Jane Kirkpatrick is a true story based the life of Eliza Spalding Warren, the daughter of Henry and Eliza Spalding.  Eliza's parents were missionaries to the Indian people and when Eliza was a young child she was kidnapped by the Cayuse Indians during a massacre. Eliza is now an adult, married and has children of her own.  Her husband wants to move to a new territory, the same territory where Eliza was held captive.

Eliza is haunted by memories of her past and she begins searching through her mother's diary to see how her her mom dealt with what had happened.  She begins to realize that things did not happen the way she thought they did.

When I read the prologue of the book, I just knew I was going to love this book!  It was so well written and automatically pulled at my heart strings.  Unfortunately, for me, the book soon lost it''s appeal.  It was rather slow paced and it jumps from present to future.  It goes from the mother's diary, to Eliza's memories, to present time, and at times I was confused.  

I did like the early story of Eliza and Mr. Warren.  Maybe because I'm a romantic at heart, but I can't even classify this book as a romance novel.  It's more of a memoir.  Even though it did not really suit my interest, I do think it is worth giving a chance.  The author pens the novel very well and I love her style of writing.  I just couldn't get into the story.  

***Thank you to Revell publishing for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Deadlock - A Book Review

Deadlock is the third book in Diann Mills series called FBI: Houston.  I did not realize this until I finished the book, so it is definitely not necessary to read the books in order.  However, I was so engaged in this book that I am anxious to go back and read the other two in this series!  If you are a fan of fast paced murder mysteries then this is a great book for you.  Once I started I didn't want to put it down.  A lot of mystery books are easily pegged, but this one kept me guessing.  There were so many possible "bad guys" and so many twists and turns that I never knew what was going to happen next.  Plus, if you read very many of my reviews you know I am a fan of christian fiction and this book is a great example of how a murder mystery can be classified as a christian book!  Diann Mills did a fantastic job.  I had not read any of her work prior to this book, but this one definitely won't be my last.

The book begins with Special Agent Bethany Sanchez starting her new position with the FBI in violent crime and what better way to start her new position then with a murder to solve.  Her new partner is Special Agent Thatcher Graves.  Thatcher previously was behind putting Bethany's brother in jail, plus he has a reputation of not playing by the rules and being a lady's man.  Bethany goes by the book and her and Thatcher couldn't be more different.  Even though they clash on a lot of things there is a definite attraction that either of them can deny.

With more murders happening and they all have similarities, it looks like Bethany and Thatcher are looking for a serial killer.  Now their own lives are being threatened, but the case seems to be deadlocked.  To see how it all turns out you will have to read for yourself!

This book has so much to offer!  Page turning suspense, romance and faith!  It's fast paced and will keep you riveted through to the last page!

***Thank you to Tyndale Publishing for providing me with this book in exchange for my honest review.

Only with Blood - A Book Review

Only with Blood is a novel about Ireland in the 1940's.  There is a lot of history interweaved into this fictional story and I learned some things about Ireland that I didn't know prior to reading this book.  It touches on the struggle that Ireland faced during the Second World War between the Irish and the British.  This was the main thing that attracted me to this book.  I have always been interested in Ireland and I was anxious to read a novel rich in the history of this country.

I found the characters of Only with Blood fairly interesting.  Caitlin is a young, attractive girl that has big plans for her future.  She wants to go to a University to further her education, but her father sells her to Jack Flynn, a farmer who is twice her age.  Jack is a farmer and he wants a wife who can bare him sons, sons that he can inherit his land once he is gone.  Caitlin resents Jack and the obedience that has been forced on her.  Then there is Donal Kelly.  He is determined to set Caitlin free from Jack and goes to great lengths to do so.

Even though the story line was pretty good there was one thing that really bothered me about this book...the language.  When I request a christian fiction book I expect to get a book that is written with standards.  I know that different people believe different ways, but bad words do NOT belong in a christian book.  It is hard for me to understand how this book was even classified as christian.  Within the first few pages there were a couple curse words and I thought and hoped it would end there, but it didn't.  For that reason alone, I cannot recommend this book to others.

***This book was provided to me through Kregel's blog review program.