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 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.

The Egyptian Princess: A Story of Hagar By KD Homberg

I received this audiobook for no charge from the author and Celebrate Lit Blogger Program in exchange for my honest review of this audiobook...