Friday, December 31, 2010

The Topkapi Secret by Terry Kelhawk

I received this book free from the publishers for my honest review of the book.

Book Summary:
On display within the Topkapi Palace Museum in Istanbul lies the Topkapi Codex – an ancient Koranic manuscript, and part of a murder that split Shiite from Sunni. What’s the truth about the Topkapi Codex? No one knows because the Topkapi Codex is off limits.

Mohammed Atareek is obsessed with getting to the codex. His research has convinced him the Koran has been changed many times, and this famous manuscript could help prove it. But the risks of getting a hold of it increase as other scholars start turning up dead.

After traumatic life circumstances Angela, a UC Berkeley English professor, makes a career move which puts her in the Middle East and across Mohammed’s path. His unique personality – overconfident, witty, and impulsive – is both puzzling and refreshing to Angela. But when Mohammed tries to engage her in his quest, he finds she has an agenda of her own. Between their cat and mouse games, heated discussions, and sparks of romance, the historical origin of the Koran unfolds


The Topkapi Secret is the first book by Terry Kelhawk, and what a debut book it is. Terry Kelhawk is on my list of new authors to read. This book contains all the pieces needed to be a great book: intrigue, love, murder, mystery, and rich, deep characters. If you are a fan of mystery and suspense you will not be disappointed with this book. The Topkapi Secret starts out with a murder, and the suspense and intrigue continues through to the end. It was an easy read with deep and interesting characters that keep you interested. The author shows a lot of knowledge of the many places and cultures in this book. I truly enjoyed this book and also learned a lot about the different cultures. The information about the Koran was very accurate also and very educational. The Topkapi Secret is an awesome book that is a must read for all. I look forward to other books by Terry Kelhawk.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Possession By Rene Gutteridge

I received this book from Tydnale Publishers free in exchange for my honest opinion and review of it.

Product Description: In the aftermath of investigating the D.C. sniper case, police detective Vance Graegan is burned out on life and love. Hoping to save his marriage, he quits the force and moves his wife and son to the other side of the country. But when the movers decide to hold his belongings for ransom, Vance is determined to ensure that his family’s new beginning is not ruined. Soon, though, losing his possessions becomes the least of his problems as everything they are fighting for begins to unravel in the hands of Vance’s past. In an unforgettable climax, a little boy’s innocent faith brings a group of desperate people to their knees. What is at stake counts for everything, but nothing can prepare Vance for who is behind it.

Vance Graegan, a retired police officer, his wife Lindy(Linda) and their son Connor set out from Washington DC to California to start a new life. Their son Conner is a Christian. He is eight and saw a televangelist and became a believer. Lindy and Vance have tried to discourage this from the start. They are very scared of his found faith, as they are not believers. Movers are hired, Lindy and Connor set out in her car to California. Vance receives a call from his ex partner Erin, asking him to come to Chicago where she is living and on the police force. She saved his life, he feels he owes her this visit. They had cut ties years ago. Once all are in California things spin out of control, the movers hold their possessions for ransom, Lindy's mother receives a strange call about Vance, and Erin shows up. Neither Vance or Lindy can prepare themselves for what they will face.

Possession by Rene Gutteridge is an edge of your seat story. This story intrigues from the beginning until the last page. Hard one to put down. The story moves at a good pace and takes many unexpected twists. The characters are very well thought out and they are strong. The topics discussed in the story are very well researched and very well explained. From the description I wasn't sure how this book fell under Christian Fiction but once into the story it is always part of the storyline. Possession shows us a child's faith despite his parents protests, parents find their own faith from the example of their son. Lindy and Vance also learn about the power of prayer and the power of putting it in God's hands and he will take care of it. I highly recommend this book and this author.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Love on Assignment By Cara Lynn James

I received Love on Assignment from booksneeze.com for my honest review of this book.

Book Description:
While Charlotte is focusing on uncovering sordid information on columnist Daniel Wilmot, her heart leads her into uncharted territory.
During the summer of 1900 Charlotte Hale, a native Newporter and secretary for the Rhode Island Reporter, accepts an undercover assignment as temporary governess to Daniel Wilmont's children in order to secretly gather evidence against him. As he helps her rediscover God, Charlotte learns that Daniel is an honorable man. They unexpectedly fall in love despite their different backgrounds and social positions. Charlotte soon realizes she must defend Daniel against the forces set against him—a willful student with a romantic crush and the newspaper editor determined to destroy his reputation.


I had the privledge to read Cara James's first book Love on a Dime and loved it. Love on Assignment did not disappoint. The book takes place in 1900 about a working class woman, Charlotte Hale, who dreams of being a journalist. Her boss gives her an assignment to become a governess for another coumnist at a rival paper to find dirt on him to discredit him and make him stop writing his articles. Charlotte took the assignment knowing she needed to support her Aunt and Sister and knew this was the only opportunity her boss would give her to be a journalist. Daniel Wilmot, columnist and bible teacher at a college in Newport gives Charlotte the job, but first asks her "Are you a Christian?" Charlotte answered "yes". She felt she was. As she stays with the Wilmots and looks into Daniel's life she realizes she had lots to learn about being a Christian. Cara Lynn James takes us through Charlottes journey of surrending to God and having faith. Charlotte grows so much in her faith and realizes her actions are not that of a Christian. We see her faith grow and Daniel Wilmot's faith also grow along with her. Its a beautiful story of following God's perfect plan, a story of true forgiveness, and a story of how love opens people up to so much.

Cara Lynn James is a wonderful author whose characters who jump off the pages of her books. The story is well researched and such a detailed, descriptive story. I look forward to reading more of Cara Lynn James's books. They are truly Christian Fiction.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Amy Inspired By Bethany Pierce

I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers for my honest opinion and review of this book.

Book Description:
After countless rejection slips, aspiring writer Amy Gallagher settles for teaching English to pay the bills. She gets through a romantic breakup and a bout of creative self-doubt with the help of friends and family. But when secrets, tragedy, and poor decisions cause rifts in relationships, can she dare to hope for love . . . and more?

Amy Inspired is an OK book. I wish I had liked it more than I did,but it just didn't keep me engaged. It is a slow moving book that doesn't just reach out and grab you. I had a tough time getting into it but then it would start moving and then would slow down. The characters were very well described and you could really relate to them, they seemed real. I was suprised it was a Christian Fiction book, wasn't much of Amy's journey with God. I know others who have read it and loved it so I believe it just wasn't my cup of tea. I look forward to reading other books by Bethany Pierce, though.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

A Rush of Wings by Kristen Heitzmann

I received this book free from Bethany House Publishers for my opinion of this book.

Book Description:
When fragmented images and unfocused panic force Noelle St. Claire to flee her wealthy, sheltered life in New York, she gains sanctuary on a ranch in the Rocky Mountains. There Noelle finds solace in the breathtaking scenery she paints. But as the attentions of two brothers, Rick and Morgan Spencer, breach the wall she hides behind, the past she yearns to escape becomes a menacing threat from which she can no longer hide. Award-winning and bestselling author Kristen Heitzmann has skillfully created a story resonating with emotion and depicting a poignant spiritual journey.

Kristen Heitzmann is a new author for me, never read any of books before receiving this one. A Rush of Wings for me took a few chapters to get into but once it got there, it was hard to put it down. Noelle St. Claire runs from New York in the middle of the night because of an abusive fiancee. She finds herself in Colorado and staying with Rick Spencer on his ranch. There she meets his brother Morgan. Both brothers see there is something going on with Noelle but can't get through her shell. Rick is a very spiritual man and very open about his spirituality. Noelle isn't spiritual at all. She actually finds hersef wanting nothing to do with God. Noelle has this horrible flashbacks/dreams that she can't figure out but they were triggered by the violence of her fiancee. Noelle settles into life at the ranch. She begins painting again and selling her work in town. An accident happens and Noelle is thrown into a mess. Rick tries to help her but knows that unless she allows God to help her she will never be healed.

The characters in this book are very deep and very likable. Life on the ranch seems very accurate. This book explores many things: spirituality, domestic violence, mental health, forgiveness, and find God. I would highly recommend this book. I have found another author that I want to read.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Code Triage by Candace Calvert

I received Code Triage from Tyndale Publishers free for my honest review of the book.

Book Description:
Dr. Leigh Stathos likes her ER shifts fast, furious, and adrenaline-infused—“Treat ’em and street ’em”—with no emotional complications. Life’s taught her a soul-rending lesson: nothing lasts forever, including marriage. And the clock is ticking toward the end of hers. Then an unwelcome confrontation with “the other woman” begins a whole new set of lessons.
San Francisco police officer Nick Stathos never gives up, whether protecting his patrol neighborhood, holding fast to faith—or trying to save his marriage. Seven days is all he has to reach Leigh’s heart. But when a desperate act of violence slams Golden Gate Mercy Hospital into lockdown, it starts a chain of events that will change lives forever


Code Triage is the 3rd Code book by Candace Calvert. Each book is its own, so you definitely don't have to read the others to read this one. Code Triage takes place in San Francisco where an ER and a San Francisco Police Officer are ending their marriage. Nick is trying to hold on to the marriage and his wife, ER Doctor Erin is wanting things to end so she can get out of San Francisco just her and her horse. Nick is very rooted in his faith and Erin feels that God has left her alone. Nick and Erin's paths cross with the type of work they do. A disaster happens at the hospital that affects Erin and Nick and put them together. Through many different peopel and circumstances they work to find their way back to each other. Nick knows that they need to have God in the center of their marriage where Erin doesn't believe that. The journey she takes is truly of journey of faith and hope. Many people come into their lives that show Forever and Ever, show how God works in everyone's lives. Candace Calvert captures the real feel of an Emergency Room and of crisis situations. She also truly shows where God works in all situations. Very fast paced book that was hard to put down. I highly recommend this book.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Where Hearts Are Free, A Darkness to Light Novel

I received Where Hearts are Free from Booksneeze.com in exchange for my honest opinion of this book.

Book Description
The odds are stacked against Bridget and Philippe reuniting. But God has a plan for them if they'll only believe.
It’s 1687, in the burgeoning town of Philadelphia, and for seven years, Bridget Barrington has watched with growing affection as Philippe Clavell worked as an indentured servant for her father, a wealthy landowner.
Her father rejects her request for Philippe to be a potential suitor as he has none of the qualities Mr. Barrington hoped for his daughter's future husband, the least of which is a respectable income.
Heartbroken, Bridget accedes to her parents’ wishes and gets engaged to a man she does not love. However, Bridget's husband-to-be does not love her, but only her wealth.
But there's always light in the midst of darkness for those who have faith. This stunning historical romance concludes the gripping Darkness to Light series.



I read the first 2 books of this 3 book series and each book was wonderful. The books are based on family history of the author. This book could be read as stand alone, it gives enough background in the book that you don't feel like you missed something. This book Where Hearts are Free is mainly about Phillipe Clavell, an indentured servant for the Barrington Family. He is there to pay off debt for his families trip to the New World. The Barrington's daughter, Bridget, has had feelings for Phillipe since he started at their estate. She professes this love to him and to her parents. From there the story goes into Phillipe's journey of love and faith and Bridget's journey of truly finding and trusting God to take care of her. This book shows how God has a plan and His plans always work out if you let them. Our author describes beautifully the time period, working conditions, and the social classes of this time. You feel like you are there seeing it all happen. The story is a beautiful story of how being faithful to God brings everything together. This book was truly a wonderful book and I look forward to reading more books from Golden Keyes Parsons.

I review for BookSneeze

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Love's First Bloom By Delia Parr

I received Love's First Bloom for free from Bethany House Publishers for my honest review of the book.

BOOK DESCRIPTION:
Ruth Livingstone's life changes drastically the day her father puts a young child in her arms and sends her to a small village in New Jersey under an assumed name. There Ruth pretends to be a widow and quietly secludes herself until her father is acquitted of a crime. But with the emergence of the penny press, the imagination of the reading public is stirred, and her father's trial stands center stage. Asher Tripp is the brash newspaperman who determines that this case is the event he can use to redeem himself as a journalist. Ruth finds solace tending a garden along the banks of the Toms River--a place where she can find a measure of peace in the midst of the sorrow that continues to build. It is also here that Asher Tripp finds a temporary residence, all in an attempt to discover if the lovely creature known as Widow Malloy is truly Ruth Livingstone, the woman every newspaper has been looking for. Love begins to slowly bloom...but is the affection they share strong enough to withstand the secrets that separate them

I truly enjoyed Love's First Bloom by Delia Bloom. I haven't read anything from Bloom prior to this. The story is set in 1838 and is a nice story. It starts with Ruth Livingstone's father, a Reverend, being accused of murder. He gives her a baby and tells her she is now Widow Malloy and the baby is hers. They get on a boat and head for a small town. There it is believed she was once a prostitute that was converted as part of Reverend Livingstone's Prodigal Daughter program. No one knows she is really his daughter. Ruth endures much tragedy and must rely on her faith in God to get her through this really hard time in her life. The story is very well written and keeps your interest. It flows and is true to the time period. Delia Bloom weaves a beautiful story of faith in God and how God uses negative experiences to bring us to a better time in life. I enjoyed this story tremendously and look forward to reading more of Delia Bloom's books.

Friday, September 17, 2010

A CONTEST

I have a book review of Immanuel's veins.....for anyone who comments on my review will get entered in to win a free T shirt from the publishers. I received one for reviewing the book and being willing to have the contest on my blog. So please leave your comments and I will draw a name by Sept 25th 2010

Masquerade by Nancy Moser

I received this book from Bethany House Publishers for free for my honest review of this book. This review is based on my own opinion of the story.

Book Description:
"Eighteen eighty-six, New York City: Charlotte Gleason, a rich heiress from England, escapes a family crisis by traveling to America in order to marry the even wealthier Conrad Tremaine. She soon decides that an arranged marriage is not for her and persuades her maid, Dora, to take her place. What begins as the whim of a spoiled rich girl wanting adventure becomes a test of survival amid poverty beyond Charlotte's blackest nightmares. As for Dora, she lives a fairy tale complete with gowns, jewels, and lavish mansions--yet is tormented by guilt and the presence of another love that will not die. Will their masquerade be discovered? Will one of them have second thoughts? There is no guarantee the switch will work. It's a risk. It's the chance of a lifetime."

This is the first book by Nancy Moser that I have read. It was a very pleasant story that kept my interest from start to finish. Takes place in 1886 about 2 girls in England who travel to America. A lady and her maid. Our lady, Charlotte "Lottie" Gleason is heading to America for an arranged marriage and her maid Dora Connors is accompaning her. Charlotte does not want to marry this man, she wants to have her own adventures so she convinces Dora to take on her identity and take her place as this man's fiancee. They enter America and from there nothing goes the way they expected. They learn quickly that God has His own plans in their lives. This story shows how God takes us out of our comfort zone in order for us to see our potential for what it truly is, to stretch our characters. Also how God brings people and circumstances into our lives that truly help shape who we are and that we are never alone. That God provides for our NEEDS. This story describes in much detail the dress of the period, the social ladder in that time and the true circumstances of living in America. Nancy Moser truly captures the real picture of that time and period. I truly enjoyed this story and look forward to reading other stories by Nancy Moser.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Immanuel's Veins by Ted Dekker

I received Immanuel's Veins by Ted Dekker from booksneeze.com for free for my honest opinion and review of this book.

Book Description
This story is for everyone--but not everyone is for this story.

It is a dangerous tale of times past. A love story full of deep seduction. A story of terrible longing and bold sacrifice.

Then as now, evil begins its courtship cloaked in light. And the heart embraces what it should flee. Forgetting it once had a truer lover.

With a kiss, evil will ravage body, soul, and mind. Yet there remains hope, because the heart knows no bounds.

Love will prove greater than lust. Sacrifice will overcome seduction. And blood will flow.

Because the battle for the heart is always violently opposed. For those desperate to drink deep from this fountain of life, enter.

But remember, not everyone is for this story

Immanuel's Veins is the first Ted Dekker book I have read and I am HOOKED. This book captured my interest from the start and kept it until the end. I got lost in the book many times not realizing how many pages I had read at a time. The book itself is neat, the pages are like those of an old book, uneven, just really stands out. The book grabs you from the start. The story is told from the first person perspective of our main character Toma Nicolescu, a warrior for Catherine the Great in Russia Circa 1772. On the first page there is a letter from Saint Thomas to preempt the start of the book. This book dives deep into the ultimate good versus evil and Love Versus Lust. Dekker takes us into the dark world of the undead(vampires). It talks about blood being life (good and evil). The characters are deep and rich, the storyline is captivating and keeps you holding your breath until the end. I highly recommend this book. I personally haven't read any of Ted Dekker's other books and didn't feel like I needed to in order to understand or follow the book. I look forward to reading more of Ted Dekker's books in the future.

I review for BookSneeze

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The Skin Map by Stephen Lawhead

I received The Skin Map by Stephen Lawhead from booksneeze.com for free for my honest opinion and review of the book.
Book Description
Enter the ultimate treasure hunt--with a map made of skin, a playing field of alternate realities, and a prize that is the greatest mystery of all.

Kit Livingstone's great-grandfather has re-appeared with an unbelievable story--the ley lines throughout Britain are not merely the stuff of legends but truly are pathways to other worlds. So few people know how to use them, though, that doing so is fraught with danger.

But one explorer knew more than most. Because of his fear of being unable to find his way home, he developed an intricate code and tattooed his map onto his skin. But the map has since been lost and rival factions are in desperate competition to recover it. What none of them yet realize is that the skin map itself is not the prize at the end of this race . . . but merely the first goal of a vast and marvelous quest to regain Paradise.


I have never read any of Stephen Lawhead's novels but I plan to start. First I would like to comment on the book physically. It is really different in how it is put together. Under the dustcover the cover has these symbols all over(the symbols are from the symbols for the Skin Map). The edges of the paper were not completely even-cut. These add to the character of the book. The Skin Map is the first book in a new series called the Bright Empires. As I stated I have not ever read any of Lawhead's books but I am excited to. Right from the beginning the book caught my attention. There are A LOT of characters in the story so that sometimes caused a little confusion but keeping in mind that this is the first of a series it made sense. Toward the middle things kind of lagged for me but then picked right back up. This book takes you to different countries at different centuries. Alot of history and research had to be done to give the details that Lawhead did. The language corresponded with the time they were in.
The Skin Map is about Kit, a modern day Londoner who meets his Great Grandfather on the street. His Great Grandfather was looking for him to help with his life long research. Ley Lines are believed to be all over the world and they allow for those who know how to use them to to different places and times. Kit is in disbelief. He goes with his Grandfather and sees its possible. Kit agrees to help his Grandfather in this quest to find The Skin Map. Once the travel starts we meet many new characters in all different times and locations. All with a common goal: to have the Skin Map.

I definitely recommend this book highly. I enjoyed the writing and the story. I look forward to reading more of Stephen Lawhead's novels and the next in this series. I now have another favorite author

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Catching Moondrops By Jennifer Erin Valent

I received this book from Tyndale Publisher free for my honest opinion and review of this book. Catching Moondrops is the 3rd book in this series, I personally have not read the first 2 books. The book is a continuation of the Lassiter Family, who 6 yrs ago took in a black child to live with them when her parents were killed. This book takes place in 1939 in Calloway, Virginia. Jessilyn Lassiter and Gemma Teague are best friends and both 19 yrs old. A black Doctor comes to Calloway to offer care to all people. In 1939 in this town the Klan has resurfaced and caused lots of problems for Jessilyn and her friends. Jessilyn is also in love with Luke Talley and he is in love with her. They finally start courting. One night a horrific event happens that changes Jessilyn deep in her being. Anger and hate start to take over. Everyone around her including Luke try to explain to her she needs to lean on God. Jessilyn questions the existence of God and why bad things happen to good people while the evil in the world get everything. Jessilyn begins to withdraw from everyone and allows her hate and anger continue to grow until she is faced with the ultimate life/death situation. Jessilyn learns what is inside of her, God.

Jennifer Erin Valent has written a wonderful book about love/hate and the very close relationship they have. Also about the big question of why do bad things happen to good people. Throughout the book our characters talk about leaning on God. I HIGHLY recommend this book. It is well written and very well researched. The language of the area and time are present and the events during that time period truly captured in this story. Reading this story felt like you were there with them seeing and feeling the experiences. I look forward to reading more of Jennifer Erin Valents books.


I Review For The Tyndale Blog Network

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Resurrection in May by Lisa Samson

I received this book through booksneeze.com for free in return to give my honest review of this book. Resurrection in May was a wonderful book. I read this book in 2 days, couldn't put it down. Lisa Samson tells a tale of redemtption, love, death, and dying and coming back. Our story is about May. A college senior that a man named Claudius finds at the side of the road drunk with no where to go. He takes her to his farm, Borne's Last Chance. There she recuperates and stays with him for a month before she is to head to Rwanda to offer services. Not as a missionary but to go and help. She and her dog Girlfriend stay with Claudius. Claudius is an older man who is mixed race. He has lived on this farm his whole life never marrying. He and May hit it off...he calls her May-May. He takes her to the airport for her trip. May writes a few times. In Rwanda unrest has started and the UN came to take May back to the states but she refused to leave. She found Jesus here with Fr. Issac and all this wonderful women and children she was taking care and they took care of her. One evening the rebels came to the camp and murdered everyone in the camp. They killed the men and children. Raped the women and killed them. Everyone was dead but May. She survived and then had to survive another 3 months with nothing but what she could find. Eventually they found her and got her back to the states but she was physically and emotionally so scarred. She lost her faith. Back in the states, May-May goes back to the farm and stays with Claudius. She makes a "life" there with Claudius. The truly love each other as a father and daughter. This book goes through her life 10 yrs after the Rwanda experience. A boy she was friends with in college came back from the army in a much similar state as May-May. He ends up into drugs and drinking and kills 2 people and is on death row. May-May begins to write him and they truly become lifelines to each other.

This book was just awesome. SO much unexpected happens. It grabs you from the beginning and keeps you in through the end. You can picture all of the characters and see how they all work together in each others lives. This book looks at faith in a huge way....we see May's loss of faith and how she found it. We see Claudius and his faith that stayed strong no matter the circumstances. It is a beautiful story of loss and being found. How Jesus never leaves us even if we leave him. I strongly recommend this book to everyone. Truly a beautiful story.


I review for BookSneeze

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

The Witness By Josh McDowell

Book Info: From Monte Carlo to Morocco to Egypt and into Petra, Marwan Accad is pursued by authorities for murders he did not commit. Tracked by advanced intelligence-surveillance technology, his every location is eventually found out, thrusting those he loves into danger. Nurtured by a bitter past that equipped him with what he needed for his company to thrive, Marwan Accad never looks back. Yet the way forward promises only uncertainty, and living each day is a lie in which corruption and greed play in the lives of man. For whose lie is he going through all of this? Even as Marwan races against time to find his pursuers and their motives, he must grapple with what is beyond his life, with what is eternal.

I received this book from Tyndale Publishing for free, in return they ask for my opinion of the book.  This is the first time I have read anything by Josh Mcdowell and I cannot wait to read more from him. The Witness grabs your attention right from the start and makes it nearly impossible to put the book down. The book moves at a good pace and takes you to places like  Casablanca, Morocco, North Africa. While going through all of these places a love story is happening with it. On top of that there is a real transformation of the main character. He is a non believer but his best friend is a believer and a bible smuggler in Casablanca.  The book was accurate with the different places and languages. Gave in depth descriptions of places and events that really happened in history.

Marwan Accad, the main character, really came to life for me and I felt sympathy for his situation....he gets framed for murder, chased by police and asassins.He and his brother own a private security company together. Their parents were killed years before and so its always just been the 2 of them. Marwan finds out information about a man's wife and within seconds of giving him the information the man is gunned down and they try to kill Marwan.  He goes to his best friend and his family for help and they help me but everyone he comes in contact with he puts at risk in this cat and mouse game. Things are not what they seem and people are not who they seem.  Marwan meets a wonderful woman along the way and begins to fall in love. Also Marwan starts to question his lack of faith and feels the tugging to have a relationship with Jesus. Marwan evolves through the whole book. This book kept you guessing until the end, definitely could not predict where things were going.  I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys thriller books and or conspiracy books. I cannot wait to see what Josh McDowell has coming out next!

I Review For The Tyndale Blog Network

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Love on a Dime: A Ladies of Summerhill Novel

book description: 

Newport, Rhode Island, 1899, is a place of shimmering waves, sleek yachts, and ladies of leisure. Of opulent mansions that serve as summer cottages for the rich and famous. Home of railroad magnates and banking tycoons--dashing young men and the women who aspire to marry them.

But it's not the place for lady novelists. Especially not those who pen disreputable dime novels. This poses a problem for Lilly Westbrook, because that's exactly what she does.No one in Lilly's social set knows she pens fiction under the nom de plume Fannie Cole. Not her family or the wealthy young man about to propose to her. And especially not Jackson Grail, the long-lost beau who just bought her publishing company...and who stirs her heart more than she cares to admit.

My Review: I received this novel from Thomas Nelson Publishers through Booksneeze.com, my review of this book is my own opinion.   Love on a Dime is the first novel by Cara Lynn James. This is a new author on my list of authors to read.  The story was a very sweet, engaging  tale of life in elite society in Newport during 1899.  James painted a very vivid picture of the period and of the atmosphere of Newport.  Our characters showed a center around God and depending on God for all of our needs. This book talked about using gifts to glorify God.  Love on a Dime kept my interest from beginning to end.  The story kept moving and really kept a good focus on the central themes. I would recommend this book to all.

In a time when ladies of society would never dream of working for pay--much less stoop to writing novels!--Lilly has found her calling as a writer of uplifting Christian romances while donating her earnings to a worthy charitable organization for young women. Years before she had been in love with Jackson Grail and he proposed. Her family did not feel he was a proper suitor so he left and vowed he would come back when he became a proper suitor. Six years later he comes back and Lilly is being courted by Harlan- an elitest in society whose family is very influential. Lilly knows they don't love each other but knows her parents approve of him. Jackson comes back looking for forgiveness and throws a wrench into all the plans. Lilly is our author Fannie Mae. Jackson has bought the publishing house that publishes her dime novels.  A gossip columnist has found out Fannie Mae is Lilly and he begins to blackmail her.  Lilly finds herself relaying on God for help in her situations.  Lilly follows Gods leading in all her situations and finds that things work out for the best.

I review for BookSneeze

Sunday, June 20, 2010

The Nook

So for my birthday my Mom and Dad went overboard and bought me a Nook. I have wanted one for a long time and now I have it. Its awesome. I haven't learned how to use the whole thing but thats the fun is the figuring it out. We have it connected to the internet and I bought my first book for $1.59. YAY. I have regular books here that I am going to read but I can't wait to use the Nook. I can't imagine that I will stop buying paperbacks and such since there are certain ones I will want in book form. So as I learn more about my Nook I will be posting my journey with the Nook. I can't wait for my Mom to get herself one so we can lend books and such but I was givng her visitation with my Nook today....she got to touch and play with it as far as I learned today...YAY

Father's day

As father's day is coming to a close, I am pondering many thoughts. I know that I am very very blessed to have a wonderful father who is still here with me. He is 66 yrs old and a cancer survivor.  My sister and I were young when he had it. It was a long road but thankfully he has stayed cancer free since.  I don't think I truly appreciated the fact of still having my Dad until I married Dean and we had kids. Both my Dad and my husband grew up without fathers. They had no idea what it was to celebrate father's day for them......they saw others celebrate their father's but never got to do it with their own fathers. That really makes you think about what the day means.  Dean doesn't know what to do on Father's day because of this....he almost doesn't want to celebrate it.  Now for my Dad my Mom always made sure it was a big deal and still does. She always gets him a nice gift and makes it about him and his day. We joke and tell him how spoiled he is but really thinking about the fact he had never celebrated father's day with HIS dad......he had a wonderful step dad in his early teens but again not the same.  I personally can't imagine not having my dad to celebrate with but it definitely puts things into perspective.  It also really is a testimony to the types of Dad they both are despite the fact they didn't have Dad's to be that example of what a Man is and what a man is supposed to do.  Please don't get me wrong I am not saying that they didn't have mom's who raised them or making light of the sacrifices made by single mothers. Just looking at some of the places where only a man can teach certain things.  I know as a girl my Dad taught me many things and showed me what unconditional love was and showed me what it meant to be a husband and how a wife should be treated.....there are things that all children need from their dads.

Now for me Fathers day was always interesting because for me my birthday falls on Father's day every so many years or its the day before or after......so I fall right into the mix. When my Grandpa was alive we spent our Father's day morning with Dad doing breakfast, giving our homemade gifts, and just being together and then we would head over to Grandpa's for food and fun with Aunts, Uncles, and cousins. We would get together to spend the day with Grandpa, even if it was my birthday. It was a great time.....and Grandpa loved having all of us there and Grandma Joyce would make so much food and everything. We truly had a good time and my parents and my Uncles always put money together to get one big gift....I can remember him getting a lawn mower, an electric garage door opener, and many cool gadgets right up his alley. I miss him so much on these holidays. But I am glad to have my memories.  We didn't make it to the cemetery this Father's Day but I know Grandpa knows we thought of him all day.

Tomorrow I turn 36, always makes me really step back and look at my life....not where I thought I would be and not where we need to be but life has taken some turns. But I am very blessed to have my loving God given Husband and my 3 miracles: Ally, Catey, and Bobby. I don't know what I would do without any of them I am so thankful for my parents and that I am lucky enough to still have both of them. My Mom who helps us out when ever we need it and is there for us went out and bought me a Nook for my birthday. I have really wanted one but I know how expensive they are. I am loving it. I have my 2 free books I got in the mail last week that I have to read and then I can start reading off the nook but in the mean time I am learning so much about it and how to use it. So tomorrow it will be me and the kids until dinner. Dean made me my fave cake Strawberry with Cream Cheese frosting.So we will have some cake and hopefully just have a good day! I hope everyone had a wonderful Father's day!!!

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Who Do I Lean On? House of Hope Book by Neta Jackson

So before I review Who do I lean on I have to start out about the Series, Yada Yada Prayer Group. This series was beyond awesome. I started reading the first one in a book club and was HOOKED. These books look at relationships with God, women's relationships with each other, and how a group of unlikely characters truly become sisters. The story is told from Jodi's perspective....her father was a pastor so she grew up in the church but wasn't having a relationship with God....she went through the motions. She attends a prayer conference and gets grouped with an interesting set of characters.......these books are just awesome.......I can't say enough about them except in order to really understand it you have to read them.

After the Yada Yada Series closed Neta Jackson started started a spin off series called House of Hope. These books are about Manna House a women's homeless shelter that our Yada sisters helped rebuild after a fire. In these books the perspective is from Gabby's perspective a new character who moves from Virginia to Chicago with her husband. Gabby and her husband live in a penthouse on the lake.  She meets a homeless woman named Lucy and everything rolls from there. Gaby gets a job at Manna House....her mother gets ill and has to move in with her and her husband.....her husband throws her out and sends their children to live with their grandparents back in Virginia. So Gabby and Grandma Shep are homeless and now are residents at Manna House.  These books adress so many aspects of faith and finding that dependence on Christ in all times of life.

In Who do I lean on, Gabby has moved into her own apartment, her boys are living with her thanks to her father in law, and she has inherited money from her Mom. She feels she is being led to purchase the building she is living in to make 2nd step housing for Manna House residents. She is going through court with her husband to make sure she can keep custody of her boys.  This book shows how if we lean on Christ things will work out in his time and how powerful prayer really is. These books I would recommend to anyone looking for a wonderful series of books about women and faith.

Neta Jackson's husband Dave has a spin off series he is writing from House of Hope  which the first book is Harry Bentley's second chance.  Harry is introduced in House of Hope as a true friend to Gabby and this book runs parallel to House of Hope. I have not read it yet but can't wait to read it.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Disaster Status By Candance Calvert

First I would like to say:Tyndale House Publishers have provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. This review is my opinion.

Disaster Status is the the second book in this series. This book follows ER Charge Nurse Erin Quinn to Pacific Mercy Hospital. Erin is living with her Grandma Iris, helping support her.  The books starts out with hazardous materials being spilled and causing panic. Not only were civilians brought in with exposure, a nurse in the ER was also exposed by a patient and falls very ill.  Erin meets Fire Captian Scott McKenna and sparks fly.

Disaster Status is a medical drama/romance story. Candance Calvert doesn't use a lot of medical terms that aren't understood. The characters are very deep. They develop right along with the story. You learn about each of them as the story goes. There is more than one storyline but they all tie together. Candace Calvert does a wonderful job weaving everyone together. This book shows strong faith of Erin and Iris. Also people struggling with faith like Scott and Leigh. Candance Calvert's story shows how faith and forgiveness bring everyone together. This book was a wonderful book that balanced drama and romance.  The focus was always on praying, faith, struggles with faith, and coming full circle.  I highly recommend this book.

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Never Let You Go By Erin Healy

Never Let You Go by Erin Healy is the first book she wrote on her own. She had co written 2 other books. I received this book from www.booksneeze.com to read and review. This review is of my own opinion.  Seven years ago Lexi Solomon's life fell apart. Her sister was killed at a shopping mall, her drug dealer husband left her, her father had a breakdown and her mother left to travel. This left Lexi and her daughter Molly. Molly was her motivation for everything she did. After work one night, Warden Pavo, showed up to inform her that the man who killer her sister was up for parole and she was going to have to testify on his behalf or her daughter would pay for it. She soon finds out that her ex husband is back in town. This book was slow to start but once it picked up I couldn't put it down. Lexi was a newer Christian, still learning about forgiveness and love. This story had evil forces working against Lexi, which because of her hatred for her husband and the man who killed her sister, evil found a foothold. Lexi had to figure out about forgiveness and how grace works for everyone. I highly recommend this book. I can't wait to see what else Erin Healy has in store for us!! This book truly shows good and evil and how good can triumph over evil

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Seasons of Grace Series

I recently finished the series by Beverly Lewis called Seasons of Grace. It is a story of an Amish woman who one morning leaves her family in search of a child she gave up for adoption many years ago. No one but her and her parents know about this child. Lettie Byler is married and has 4 other children. Her family is turned upside down by her leaving and not knowing what was happening. In the mean time an Englisher has come to Lancaster county in search of Natural treatments for Cancer.  There are 3 books in this series and where one ends the next one picks up. The series is wonderful and well written.....I couldn't put the books down......the books are well researched as far as Amish ways and religion. Beverly Lewis truly portrays the Amish life and also shows how everyone is human and fall short.

Monday, April 5, 2010

The Hand of Fate- A Triple Threat Novel

I received the book, Hand of Fate; a Triple Threat Novel, free from booksneeze.com to review. This is my opinions of this book. This is the 2nd book by Lis Wiehl with April Henry. Hand of Fate is an awesome book. I couldn't put it down. We again see our 3 friends: Allison, a DA, Nicole, FBI Agent, and Cassidy, a TV reporter.  We meet Jim Fate in this book. He has a radio show called "hand of fate". He is a friend of Cassidy's and had contacted Allison and Nicole about threats he was receiving on his life. He receives a package and opens it. When it is opened a "gas" of some kind is released. This starts a whole chain of events....chaos......unsure of what was released it begins investigations. So begins a case to figure out who wanted Jim Fate dead and the list is HUGE. Could be his co host, his Nuts of the Day, or even a Politician. Intertwined in these events we see our 3 friends going through their own personal crisis. A miscarriage, a drug addiction, and also admission of rape that happened 10 yrs ago. We see the friends relying on their faith to get through these trials.  Just as Face of Betrayal, this book kept you on the edge of your seat and in the end the suspect is NOT who you would think it was. I am so glad to have been given the opportunity to read this book and now have another favorite author! Can't wait for another Triple Threat book to come out!! Lis Weihl is a very talented writer and knows how to keep her readers wanting more.

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Monday, March 29, 2010

Plain Paradise by Beth Wiseman

I received this book Plain Paradise from booksneeze.com to review. This review is based on my opinions of the book and its author. This book is the 4th book in  The Daughters of the Promise Novels. This book follows along Linda Huyard, a 17 yr old Amish girl who was adopted at 2 weeks old. Her birth mother was 17 yrs old when she had an encounter with a teacher. Her parents forced the adoption. Linda has no idea she was adopted. One day her birthmother, Josie, shows up wanting to meet her and get to know her. Josie has cancer and is terminal. Linda's parents have to tell her and her brothers she was adopted. This book incorporates new and old characters from other books in this series. We watch Linda go through her Rumspringa and follow into her faith. We see Josie become a believer and have a miracle happen in her life. The book shows all the emotions that go with being adopted and the emotions all involved have but they continue to rely on Faith in God and it sees them all through. The book is well written and was just a wonderful story of lost faith being found and new bonds being formed. I recommend this book highly. Beth Wiseman is an awesome author.

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Thursday, March 4, 2010

The clouds roll away by Sibella Giorella

I had not read any books by this author until I received this free from Booksneeze.com and I love her books. An awesome author and this book was just great.

The Clouds Roll Away is the 3rd book in the series which I didn't realize until I ordered it. When I ordered it I thought there were only 2 books in the series so I read her 2nd book The Rivers Run Dry. Awesome Book. So I just finished The Clouds roll away. I truly enjoyed the book. Was a bit confused at first how Raleigh, our main character, was back in Richmond but was patient and it was explained through out. Raleigh was transferred back to Richmond after being transferred to Seattle with the FBI for disciplinary reasons. She got back to Richmond and was put right back into a high profile case of a hate crime. This book goes deep into the crimes, into the historical roots, and gives a really great description of Richmond and the down south air. Not only is our main character dealing with professional issues: A boss who doesn't like her, co workers who don't trust her, and getting assignments that spell failure we see her personal life: still dealing with her dad's unsolved death, her mothers mental issues, and family dynamics that run deep. Her personal and professional life intersect. Sibella Giorello is a great author who really knows how to spin these stories. You don't expect what is coming next and it all ties in. These books give enough background that you can read #3 without reading the other 2. I am so glad I was given the opportunity to read this wonderful author.


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Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Face of Betrayal by Lis Wiehl with April Henry

Face of  Betrayal- A Triple Threat Novel is an awesome book. Its about 3 friends, a prosecutor, a reporter, and an FBI agent who work on cases together. The case they are doing is a missing girl Katie Converse. She goes missing while home on Christmas break from the Senate Page program. They find her my space account and her enteries start to lead them to looking at a Senator. As the senator is the focus of the investigation but they haven't found her or a body. The book is fast moving and not just deals with the case but deals with life. A woman who couldn't get pregnant but finally does, a single mom, and a victim of domestic abuse. The domestic abuse is not just a woman who is victim but also addresses a man as a victim of domestic violence.  The book also looks at politics and the corruption in politics and family dynamics of step parents and their role. The books reminds me of The Women's Murder club just with the 3 friends but is definitely different. The book is well written and I recommend anyone who likes mystery type books to definitely read it. MUST READ. Couldn't put the book down.  Can't wait for the next book to come out. Excited to see what Lis Wiehl comes up with in the next book of the series.

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Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Finding Purpose Beyond Our Pain Review

Thanks to Booksneeze.com I received a wonderful book called Finding Purpose Beyond Our Pain Uncover the Hidden Potential in Life's Most Common Struggles By Paul Meier M.D. and David Livingstone Henderson M.D. It is an awesome book that talks about the things in life that we can't control and how to use those things as positives rather than negatives.  It explains why God allows pain and suffering and how to not just ask why but to use it to draw closer to Him to get through these things. Very well written. Pain is an opportunity to grow and to find a better relationship with Jesus. I found the book quite balanced. It provides a framework to look at your life situation and try to see the lessons behind your present troubles. The authors have chosen to deal with several of the most difficult life situations: injustice, rejection, loneliness, loss, discipline, failure and death. In each case, they discuss their experiences with real people experiencing these problems and finding in them an opportunity for growth.
Personally I felt this book really helped explain why and how to use that pain for good. Awesome book. Glad I was given the chance to read it.

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Friday, January 8, 2010

So thankful

So decided to try the blogging thing again. I have been wanting to write lately but not sure what or where.....life is just crazy.  Today our oldest Ally left for green bay to attend Districts with our church....its so exciting.....this years districts has been a huge blessing before it even started.  We put our down payment down and on Christmas Eve we received an email from Pastor Chris saying that someone anamously paid the rest of Ally's district fees.....we were just floored.....we don't know who did but we are so thankful for them and their generousity.  We are praying for awesome things for Ally and the rest of the youth there........So its just Dean, Catey, Bobby, and I this weekend.  We went to Southridge Mall for dinner at the food court and to walk around.....so we went upstairs to Waldenbooks, they are closing and have everything 50-70% off so I went in and found 2 books I was looking for....as I was checking out I was thinking about the Christmas I worked at Walden for seasonal help. Worked with some awesome ladies.....well my manager, Patty is still there and she ended up checking me out....as we checked out she kept looking at me and finally said "wow you look so familiar" so I tell her who I am and we get to talking.....the store is closing by end of month.....she has worked there for 31 yrs and they are offering her a max severance of 12 weeks (should be a week for every year worked there). Unfortunately no jobs out there right now. So end of January she will be out of a job with the other staff. Most of the the staff has been there for over 20 yrs.....it was nice to talk to her but sad.....it just made me so thankful for dean's job...we have been unemployed before.......we spend 1.5 yrs unemployed after 9/11/01....it was hard but looking back, God never let us go without....it was hard and it was not fun but we always had a place to live, always had food, water, shelter. I know the power of prayer and I am praying for all of them that there is something out there for them but I feel so bad......I just wanted to hug Patty.......but I know God has a plan....God sure had one for us and we are thankful.....after that year and half we got another job....when that job ended we had a new one real quick and soon after that we got the offer from Quad and have been there ever since. We are so blessed.  I am thankful everyday that my husband has a job to go to and that I am able to be home.  So guess thats it for now.  Please pray for the Walden workers....they are closing 200 stores this month.....