Monday, February 15, 2016

If I Run By Terri Blackstock and Great Pre Order and Giveaway

I received this book from Litfuse Publicity for no charge for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description:


CASEY KNOWS THE TRUTH. BUT IT WON’T SET HER FREE.

Casey Cox’s DNA is all over the crime scene. There’s no use talking to police; they’ve failed her abysmally before. She has to flee before she’s arrested . . . or worse. The truth doesn’t matter anymore.

But what is the truth? That’s the question haunting Dylan Roberts, the war-weary veteran hired to find Casey. PTSD has marked him damaged goods, but bringing Casey back can redeem him. Though the crime scene seems to tell the whole story, details of the murder aren’t adding up.
Casey Cox doesn’t fit the profile of a killer. But are Dylan’s skewed perceptions keeping him from being objective? If she isn’t guilty, why did she run?

Unraveling her past and the evidence that condemns her will take more time than he has, but as Dylan’s damaged soul intersects with hers, he is faced with two choices: the girl who occupies his every thought is a psychopathic killer . . . or a selfless hero. And the truth could be the most deadly weapon yet.


My Thoughts:


If I Run is Terri Blackstock's newest release and all I can say is WOW!! I have read some of Terri Blackstock's other books and this one is by far the best! I love a good Suspense/mystery book so her books are right in my wheel house. From the first sentence to the last this book had me at the edge of my seat, guessing what would happen. Terri Blackstock writes with authority on police procedure, investigating, technology, traveling in the U.S. using various modes, and crimes. I found all of the characters well written and definitely having different layers to their personalities. I personally enjoyed Dylan Roberts and Casey Cox. Their characters are broken, trying to make sense of life after both seeing so much tragedy in their lives. I enjoyed the interactions they had with one another and other characters in the book. I really felt like I was there with Casey, on the run, trying to figure out what to do. I found myself laughing in some parts, crying in others, and holding my breath in anticipation. As soon as I finished this book I was ready for the next one, the ending was surprising and I can't wait to read the next one. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Fiction and/or Suspense/mystery, you will not be disappointed. I cannot wait to read more of Terri Blackstock books! I give this book 5+ STARS.


Casey Cox doesn’t fit the profile of a killer . . . but her DNA is all over the crime scene, and she's now a fugitive. Don't miss Terri Blackstock's next page-turner, If I Run. Unraveling her past and the evidence that condemns her will take more time than Dylan has, the war-weary veteran hired to find Casey. But as Dylan’s damaged soul intersects with hers, he is faced with two choices. The girl who occupies his every thought is a psychopathic killer . . . or a selfless hero. And the truth could be the most deadly weapon yet.

Join Terri in celebrating her new book with a Fitbit giveaway and a special $4.99 digital pre-order deal!

if i run-400 

One grand prize winner will receive:
Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry! The giveaway ends on February 16th. The winner will be announced February 17th on the Litfuse blog.

Plus don't miss out on the special $4.99 digital pre-order pricing, now through February 15. Pre-order the book through your favorite e-book retailer; details here.

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Sunday, February 14, 2016

A River Too Deep By Sydney Tooman Betts

I received this book from Sydney Tooman Betts through Celebrate Lit Blogging program for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description: 

In the spring of 1817, Alcy Callen and her father visit a step-uncle they have long presumed dead; but instead of enjoying a loving reunion, they are plunged into treachery and deceit. Nothing is as they expected and little is what it seems. Even the man who helps her escape is not the reliable suitor he appears. Alcy is caught between gratitude and fear, unable to avoid her rescuer's attentions or understand the responses they stir. Neither can she tell what sort of man he is or what he intends to do with her in the strange place they are going. Will he keep her for himself or will he sell her to the highest bidder? Of one person only is she certain, but will he come for her before it is too late?


My Thoughts:

A River Too Deep is Sydney Tooman Betts first book and it is fantastic. Sydney Tooman Betts is a writer who has written many things but this is her first published book. I personally haven't read anything from her but her writing is great.  As readers of my blog know I am a huge fan of debut authors and Christian Historical Fiction and this book is both!  Sydney Tooman Betts writes with authority about the late 1800's in the U.S. and the world, Native Americans history and traditions, life in small towns and big cities,and the social/class system at the time.  At the beginning I had a little bit of trouble getting into the book but once I got to about chapter 3 I could NOT put it down. The start might have been a little slow but the rest of the book made up for it!! This book kept me guessing until the end. The characters are well written and very interesting. Some of them are NOT who they seem and I really enjoyed watching some of the characters grow and mature. This book is very well written and I enjoyed Sydney Tooman Betts style of writing, especially at the end of each chapter, there is a verse of scripture that really goes with the chapter. She also did a great job mixing fact and fiction, I know that I learned a lot about this time in history from this book.  I really felt like I was there watching all of these events unfold. I found myself holding my breath in parts, scared of  what might happen, smiling at the silly stuff, and crying at the sad stuff. This book has a little bit of everything in it to make it such a great book. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction and Native American history. I give this book 5 STARS.

Please check out the link below for a great giveaway!!!





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Monday, February 8, 2016

Live To Air: An Ethan Benson Thriller Book 1 By Jeffrey L. Diamond

I received this book from GreenLeaf Book Group and the author for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.


Book Description:

Television, politics, and the Russian mob: Live to Air is a riveting crime thriller, jam-packed with intrigue and unforgettable characters.

Ethan Benson is a charming and principled-if sometimes difficult-television producer in New York City who detests doing crime stories. But that's of no significance to his high-powered boss at the network, and Benson finds himself assigned to investigating a bloody shoot-out in the Meatpacking District, whose old grime and new glitz provide a symbolic background for a sensational murder that has dominated the headlines.

As he pieces together his story, Benson literally covers New York-from Central Park and Fifth Avenue to Little Russia in Brooklyn and Rikers Island in Queens-crossing paths with a fascinating cast of characters on both sides of the law. Unknown to Benson, organized crime may be only one facet of the thrilling investigation. With his wife and son in hiding and his life in danger, Benson draws closer to a resolution that will have explosive results for the criminals-and for some members of New York City's political elite as well.


My Thoughts:


Live To Air is Jeffrey L. Diamond's first book in his Ethan Benson Thriller series and his first book as a mystery writer and frankly, it is FANTASTIC! Jeffrey L. Diamond has been an award winning journalist in television broadcasting for 40 years working on shows like 20/20. His expertise in the inner workings of investigative reporting and news broadcasting shows throughout this book. He also writes with authority about police procedure/investigations, cover ups, organized crime, investigating, and all the technical magic that goes into making TV.  Live To Air is a Suspense/Thriller that blew me away. As readers of my blog know, I typically read and review Christian Fiction but I do read a whole myriad of different types of books both Christian and Secular. Jeffrey L Diamond has been added to my top 10 authors to read. Live To Air grabbed a hold to me from literally the first page until the last one with so many twists it kept me guessing until the end. I loved the characters, good or bad, they are all real people living real lives. I especially liked Ethan Benson. His life is messy to say the least and in the beginning his life seems to be unraveling both personally and professionally but he stumbles onto something much bigger than anyone imagines. The action was spectacular, kept me on the edge of my seat, sometimes I found myself holding my breath. I do want to add that this book does have strong language but don't let that deter you from reading it!! I felt it did add to the overall tone and authenticity of the book. I HIGHLY recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Suspense/Thriller fiction, you will not be disappointed. I cannot wait to read the next books in this series, Live To Tape and Live To The Network. I am impatiently waiting for their releases! I give this book 5+STARS.

Friday, February 5, 2016

The Peacock Throne By Lisa Karon Richardson

I received this book from Kregel Publications for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.


Book Description: 


When Miss Lydia Garrett's guardian is murdered, and the authorities refuse to investigate the odd circumstances, she vows to catch the culprit. The same night the Earl of Danbury is murdered in his bed. Against all odds it appears that the murders are related - and Anthony Douglas, the new Lord Danbury, is bent on revenge. The clues point to the former Earl's first naval command. In 1758 the Earl spirited away and hid the magnificent Peacock Throne at the behest of the Indian royal family. To draw out the murderer, Anthony and Lydia agree that they must locate the throne. However, they are not the only ones interested in the Peacock Throne. Marcus Wiltshire, agent of His Majesty's intelligence services, has received hints that Bonaparte intends to return the throne to India and leverage its mystical significance to foment rebellion and cut England off from her most important trading partner. When the amateur sleuths join forces with the professional agent, the quest for the throne leads them around the globe on an adventure steeped in danger, treachery, and romance.


My Thoughts: 

The Peacock Throne is the newest book by Lisa Karon Richardson and it is great! As a fan of Christian Historical Fiction and Suspense books, I was intrigued by the book. The first thing I noticed about this book was the front cover.  The girl, peacock feather, and the sailing ship made me curious about what this book was about. Lisa Karon Richardson writes with authority on our world in the 1700's especially USA and Europe, military strategies during this time, monarchies, the caste system, proper etiquette, cross country traveling, police procedures, detective work. From the start, The Peacock Throne is action packed and it continues on this steady pace through out the whole book. I was very drawn in from the start and had a very hard time putting this book down. The cast of characters in this book are great, real people in real situations. I especially enjoyed the interactions between Lydia and Anthony Douglas. Two opposite people thrown together by tragedy and a need for answers about the lives and deaths of their loved ones.  They may also find out things about each other and how they are connected by more than just their dead relatives. I really felt like I was there on this adventure with the characters and definitely couldn't put this book down. I highly recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction and Suspense, you will not be disappointed. I look forward to reading more from Lisa Karon Richardson! I give this book 5 STARS.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Marriage on the Mend: Healing Your Marriage After Crisis, Separation, or Divorce By Clint and Penny Bragg

I received this book from Kregel Publications for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.


Book Description:

"Every broken marriage has the hope of becoming a saved marriage."
Approximately fifty percent of the couples who sign a marriage license will also sign on the dotted line of a divorce document. In order to turn the tide of this stark statistic, couples who have considered or experienced separation or divorce must be given real tools to reconcile, restore, and rebuild their relationships. "Marriage on the Mend" provides these tools for couples in crisis.
Clint and Penny Bragg know what it means to be that couple. After being divorced for eleven years and living 3,000 miles from each other, they were remarried--but the difficult work of restoration continued long after that second ceremony. The Braggs know that couples who reconcile face a unique set of challenges, including unresolved arguments, poor communication habits, unforgiveness, and betrayed trust. Biblically based materials are required to walk through this treacherous territory toward full healing and restoration.
This practical, realistic book identifies roadblocks that may stall relationship progress, recommends ideas to deepen intimacy, offers solutions to effectively handle past hurts and conflicts, and applies Scripture to every aspect of the process in order to proactively stabilize and safeguard the marriage. At the end of each chapter, the Braggs include a prayer for couples to share to help facilitate healing.
The one thing all broken relationships have in common is that true healing takes time. Using the framework of Nehemiah's effort to restore Jerusalem's walls following the Israelite's exile and captivity, "Marriage on the Mend" provides a clear framework for the restoration of relationships.


My Thoughts: 

Marriage on the Mend: Healing Your Marriage After Crisis, Separation, or Divorce is the first book by Clint and Penny Bragg I have had the pleasure of reading and it is a fantastic book. When I read about this book and the authors, I felt drawn to it. I have been married for 20 years and we have had our ups and downs and we are in a down season so I was very interested in this book.  Clint and Penny Bragg write with authority about all aspects of marriage: the good, the not so good, and the not so pretty. The first thing that struck me as I read, was their total transparency and openness to their readers. What struck me next is that is NOT a how to book.  The Braggs didn't have a magic equation to fix their marriage, they give the readers a framework right from The Bible using Nehemiah's story in his efforts to restore Jerusalem's walls after the Israelite's exile and captivity and also other Scripture to help readers understand.   This book doesn't stop at getting back together. They make it clear that the work doesn't stop, actually most of the work begins after reconciling. Marriage is something that needs constant tending.   I could feel the Bragg's hearts and souls in their writing and their willingness to bring the readers into their private world showing that no one's marriage is perfect. Even though we may not have the same issues this book really grabbed a hold of me and held on long after the last page.  This is one of those books that will stay with me for a very long time as we work on our marriage and it is one of a few books I will be reading again to learn about things that I probably missed in the first read.  This book really brings a lot of emotions out as you read. I found myself laughing in some parts and crying in others, seeing where I have work to do. Clint and Penny Bragg are fantastic writers and I am so thankful for their book.  I highly recommend this book to anyone who is married, no matter what season, it really is relevant. I am excited to read more from The Braggs. I give this book 5+ STARS.

***I apologize to Clint and Penny Bragg and Kregel Publications for the lateness of this review.***

Direct Hit: The Blitz Detective Book 1 By Mike Hollow

I received this book from Kregel Publications for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Book Description: 

The jagged blast of high explosives rips through the evening air. In the sky over East London the searchlights criss-cross in search of the enemy.

On the first night of the Blitz, a corpse is discovered in a van in the back streets of West Ham. Detective Inspector John Jago recognizes the dead man as local Justice of the Peace Charles Villiers. But then a German bomb obliterates all evidence.

Villiers, not a popular man, was both powerful and feared. As the sirens wail, the detective must start matching motive to opportunity – and it doesn’t help when his boss foists an intrusive American journalist on him.

Jago soon discovers the dead man held many secrets, some reaching back to World War I. A lot of people wished Villiers dead – and an air raid is a good time to conceal a murder.


My Thoughts: 

Direct Hit is the first book in Debut Author, Mike Hollow's series, The Blitz detective and it is very good. As a huge fan of Christian Historical Fiction and debut authors, this book fit great! Mike Hollow writes with authority about England during WWII, police procedures during this time in England, journalism/writing in USA and England during WWII, and life/events during WWI. From the start this book grabbed a hold of me and kept my interest all the way until the end. Mike Hollow definitely kept me on the edge of my seat throughout, twists and turns that kept me surprised until the end.  I really enjoyed how Mike Hollow wove together fact and fiction throughout this book. I found myself learning more about WWI and WWII in this book. I love learning more about these times in our world's history. I found the characters well written and very real, especially Detective John Jago. He is a complicated character with his own struggles both personal and professional. I found his process of solving crimes very interesting and I enjoyed learning about him. As I stated above this book really did grab a hold of me from the start, all the way through the end. I loved the twists and turns. As I read this book, I really felt like I was there with Detective Inspector John Jago watching him investigate and solve the murder. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Mystery Fiction, you will not be disappointed. I look forward to reading the rest of the books in this series! I give this book 4 STARS.


***I would like to apologize to Mike Hollow and Kregel Publications for the lateness of this review.***

Only With Blood By Therese Down

I received this book from Kregel Publications for no charge in exchange for my honest review of this book. The opinions expressed here are my own.


Book Description:


When dying Jack Flynn decides he needs a bride so that he can father a son, his young wife Caitlin proves far more than he intended to buy
Jack Flynn, strong and aggressive but slowly dying of tuberculosis on his farm in Tipperary in the Republic of Ireland, decides to acquire―purchase―a young wife who can bear him sons to inherit his family’s land. His choice, Caitlin Spillane, is less than half his age, attractive and intelligent, and resents bitterly the obedience that is forced upon her.
When a young firebrand, a supporter of the IRA, arrives in the village, he and Caitlin are drawn together in their detestation of Flynn. Flynn, traumatized by his own insurgent IRA experiences twenty years earlier, is secretly convinced that Eamonn de Valera’s more diplomatic, peaceful approach to Ireland’s problems is the only sane one.
Could Caitlin be won for the cause, and leave her unloved husband?
A novel set against the struggle for the heart of Ireland in the Second World War, when the IRA notoriously sought assistance from the Nazis, Only with Blood explores flawed characters placed in extraordinary situations.



My Thoughts:

Only With Blood is Therese Down's debut book and it is a good one. As a huge fan of debut books and Christian Historical Fiction Only With Blood really caught my attention.  Therese Down writes with authority about WWII, Ireland, England, the IRA, and the state of the world during WWII.  Therese Down wrote a wonderful story with a perfect mix of fact and fiction, that really taught me a lot about this time in our history and about Ireland's involvement with the Nazi party. I learned so much while reading this book. For the most part I found Only With Blood engaging, just a few parts that sort of bogged me down but glad I kept reading. I found the characters in this book real, dealing with real issues of that time, some we still deal with today and some very foreign in this day in age. I again found myself learning about the lives of people during WWII in Ireland and their involvement,  something you don't hear a lot about. My favorite character would have to be Caitlin Spillane. I loved her spirit and her strength. As I stated before, except for a few spots, this book held me from start to finish and definitely kept me guessing throughout. Theresa Down really transports her audience to this time and place. I really felt like I was there watching as the events unfolded. I recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian Historical Fiction, especially about WWII, you will NOT be disappointed. I can't wait to read more from Therese Down. I give this book 4 STARS.

***As a side note I would like to apologize to Therese Down and Kregel Publications for the lateness of this review!***