For the Love of Literature

For the Love of Literature

As a bibliophile, my passion for books coalesces with a love of writing, and writing book reviews allows me to share literature with the world.

Review
5 Stars
“When we search for manna in our life, we can see God’s hand, whether we are in want or plenty.”
In Want + Plenty: Waking Up to God's Provision in a Land of Longing - McDaniel,  Meredith

Whether you are currently walking through the desert place or not, Meredith McDaniel’s “In Want + Plenty” will speak to your heart. Subtitled “Waking Up to God’s Provision in a Land of Longing”, it gets to the heart of the matter, because we are all longing for something, and the only One who can satisfy us is God Himself in the person of Jesus. This book is unique and interactive, taking readers through the book of Exodus on a journey to recognizing and drawing sustenance from God’s provision. The author’s compassionate heart and counseling background shine through and coalesce as she guides readers through the Israelites’ journey, which our own lives mirror in so many ways. This connection focuses on manna: that which God provided for the Israelites in the wilderness and that which we receive today. McDaniel explains that “God’s willingness to enter in and hear the hearts of his people is a form of manna. He is God and he does not owe us that gift of his presence, yet he offers it constantly.” Indeed, this is our blessed assurance, that “when we surrender to trusting Jesus and enter a relationship with him, recognizing him as the ultimate Manna in our life, we do find peace.” Regardless of our circumstances, God is always there, “making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland” (Isaiah 43:19).

“In Want + Plenty” has an integrative format perfect for either group or individual study. Its arrangement reminded me of a devotional. There are nine sections interspersed with questions for personal reflection, as well as re:story questions for journaling at the end of each section and a re:sound, a song meant to heal. Highlighted phrases throughout the text and quotations pulled from the text and placed in the margins appear in green and draw the reader’s attention to them while summarizing the valuable skills. Each section begins with an exploration of the Exodus journey, followed by personal stories from the author that are germane to the Biblical story and to the focus of that section. This is a great arrangement because it teaches how the Old Testament is still vitally important to our faith. Furthermore, “In Want + Plenty” demonstrates that our own journey through the desert will lead us, also, to a land of milk and honey if we accept the Manna that God sent for us in the person of Jesus.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Review
5 Stars
An Introduction to Anxiety Disorders
Managing Worry and Anxiety: Practical Tools to Help You Deal with Life's Challenges - Holthaus,  Jean

Ubiquitous in our twenty-first century society, worry and anxiety are a plague driven by busyness, the struggle to succeed, and an increasingly secularized culture. In a scholarly yet highly readable book, Jean Holthaus uses a combination of medical science, psychology, and Christian theology to give readers insight into what causes anxiety, how to identify different types of anxiety, and how to seek help. Whereas most self-help books promote a certain protocol or fad diet routine, Holthaus takes a multilayered approach. She not only allows for but also discusses how mental illness affects the body and mind. I appreciate that she discusses prescription medication without discounting natural remedies, as different people respond to some treatments better than others.

Graphics and charts enliven “Managing Worry and Anxiety” and make the text easier to comprehend. Even the scientific phrases and data are able to be understood by the average adult.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Review
5 Stars
Onward and Upward!
Saints: Becoming More Than "Christians" - Bevere,  Addison

I'll be honest, when I first saw the cover of "Saints", I made the assumption that it would be a compendium of revered figures in Church history. Then I saw the subtitle, "Becoming More Than 'Christians'", and decided to investigate further. I was sufficiently intrigued to request it for review, and I am glad that I did! Rather than a tedious monologue, I discovered an engaging and stimulating call to return to our first love, Jesus. 

With "Saints", Addison Bevere sets forth a timely exegesis of what that term actually means within the Bible's context and how we can and should strive to apply it to our lives so that it becomes ingrained into our identity. As Bevere explains, saints are those who have faith in Christ and are in a continually-deepening relationship with God through Him; "a saint is someone who brings a future reality into the present." As a language buff, I appreciate how he expounds upon the semantics of the Bible's use of the term "saints" over "Christians." Furthermore, I find his open acknowledgement and explanation of seemingly contradictory facts or statements in certain Bible passages, such as those relating to fearing the Lord and also not being afraid, wise; as such, I would recommend this book to nonbelievers, especially those with an agnostic bent. 

Bevere is in tune with today's society and its Gospel needs, accurately pinpointing some of the most prominent areas of spiritual dearth and pointing readers toward the source of abundance: Jesus. He makes it clear that while nothing can separate us from God's love (Romans 8:38-39), we can separate ourselves from God's grace because “Pride is the grace blocker.” I love how he progresses from the Old Testament to the New Testament because so many focus only on Jesus in the New Testament. "Saints" is truly where the rubber meets the road of our faith journey, and I recommend it to anyone who wants to take their faith in Christ to the next level. Onward and upward! 


I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Review
4 Stars
From Sky to Sky Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  From Sky to Sky

Author: Amanda G. Stevens

Genre:  Christian Suspense/ Fantasy

Release Date: February, 2020

Zac Wilson can’t die.

Daredevil Zac Wilson isn’t the first celebrity to keep a secret from the world, but his might be the most marvelous in history: Zac doesn’t age and injuries can’t kill him. What’s more, he’s part of a close-knit group of others just like him.

Holed up in Harbor Vale, Michigan, Zac meets two more of his kind who claim others in their circle have died. Are their lifetimes finally ending naturally, or is someone targeting them—a predator who knows what they are?

The answers Zac unearths present impossible dilemmas: whom to protect, how to seek justice, how to bring peace to turmoil. His next action could fracture forever the family he longs to unite. Now might be the time to ask for help. . .from God Himself. But Zac’s greatest fear is facing the God he has run from for more than a century.



Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author

 


As a child, Amanda G. Stevens disparaged Mary Poppins and Stuart Little because they could never happen. Now she writes speculative fiction. She is the author of the Haven Seekers series, and her debut Seek and Hide was a 2015 INSPY Award finalist. She lives in Michigan and loves trade paperbacks, folk music, the Golden Era of Hollywood, and white cheddar popcorn.
 
 

 

 

 

More from Amanda

 

For years, the theme of immortality has intrigued me. I love the Elves of Middle-Earth, the “happiest and saddest” of the peoples Tolkien created as they watch the ages pass. I love the exploration of aged sorrow in Tuck Everlasting. I’ve stuck with TV shows which shall remain nameless (but, ahem, a few feature vampires) because I’m always wondering how did this writer tackle immortality? Anything new? Are the characters convincingly old and young at the same time?

The thing is, while some of these fiction works satisfy me more than others, I’m always left with a tug of incompletion. Eventually I figured out this tug was a story in my own head and heart wanting to come out, a contemporary story that included the gospel. What might God’s plan be for those whose earthly days seem unnumbered? How would their age affect their interactions with humanity and with faith? These questions were the springboard for the No Less Days series, and of course the answers vary with the individual. Ultimately this is why I write: to explore people, their inner selves, their relationships. My goal is always to create characters that breathe from the page.

In From Sky to Sky, we get a look into the head and heart of Zac Wilson, who has been on the run from God longer than any of us could imagine: a full century playing the prodigal. I always try to be honest about how much life can hurt, “even” for the Christian; if we had triple the number of years to accumulate hurt in this broken world, we’d have a lot of it. That’s true of all my ageless characters, including Zac. To scratch the surface, this man fought in two world wars and has outlived all his children.

But the sum of Zac is much more than his collected wounds. He is a deep-feeling, fun-loving, generous guy. He enjoys music and physical activity. He has an insatiable sweet tooth and a need for open spaces. He’s not afraid to laugh at his own expense, and he has a boundless love for people and the stories of their lives.

My hope is that readers will grow to love this young old guy as they journey with him through some dark times toward redemption and light.
 

My Review

 
While “No Less Days” immediately captured my interest and never let go, this sequel was not quite as intriguing. I was thankful that the prologue replayed a scene relating to the ending of book one to refresh my memory, but the rest of the narrative proceeded at a pace that I personally feel is too slow for a book categorized as suspense. The opening chapters were not that interesting to me, so my anticipation dropped quite a bit. While there is an element of suspense regarding whether this group of near-immortals are finally reaching the end of their long lifespans or are being hunted down, I was not very engaged with the plot and was not dying to know what would happen next.

Where “From Sky to Sky” truly does shine, however, is in the faith element. Calloused by a century of avoiding God, Zac Wilson must surrender his heart back to the One whom he has run from for so long. With other longevites dying, Zac’s unique family is threatened, and in a beautiful display of the redemption and promise of Romans 8:28, Zac is finally at a seminal point in which both his life and faith journeys intersect. This is where the story becomes most readable, and to witness the longevite’s and his family’s response to the Gospel and what it means to and for them makes this a worthwhile read.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops

 

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 22

Texas Book-aholic, February 22

Inklings and notions, February 23

Inside the Wong Mind, February 23

Through the Fire Blogs, February 24

For the Love of Literature, February 25

deb’s Book Review, February 25

For Him and My Family, February 26

Mary Hake, February 26

Older & Smarter?, February 27

Blogging With Carol, February 28

Life love writing, February 28

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 29

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, February 29

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, March 1

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 2

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, March 2

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, March 3

Hallie Reads, March 3

Simple Harvest Reads, March 4 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Pause for Tales, March 5

Tell Tale Book Reviews, March 5

Remembrancy, March 6

Bigreadersite, March 6

 

Giveaway

 

To celebrate her tour, Amanda is giving away the grand prize package of a a $25 Amazon gift card and a free copy of From Sky to Sky!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
5 Stars
Riveting Christian Suspense!
Collision of Lies - Threadgill,  Tom

And the award for best thriller so far this year goes to “Collision of Lies” by Tom Threadgill! I’ve recently read a few great suspense novels, but this one went above and beyond. It’s always a delight to find a new Christian suspense author because the secular market for this genre is so full of profanity and lewdness. Another perk for me was that there was not a romantic side plot. I prefer to focus on the suspense and not be distracted by romantic affairs. Like the train wreck that forms part of the plot, I could not look away once I started turning the pages.

Threadgill builds the plot carefully, piece by piece, rather than revealing it all at once, and this approach draws the reader inexorably into the burning mystery. Three years ago, a school bus full of children died in a devastating accident. Or was it? And is there a chance that one of the children, Benjamin Reyes, could inexplicably still be alive? San Antonio police detective Amara Alvarez finds herself unintentionally drawn into investigating this closed case, with coincidence upon coincidence adding up to a shocking conclusion. Each step had me questioning how I would react or what I would do, and I felt empathetic toward Amara and the Reyes family, a sure sign of adept writing. Likewise, the camaraderie between the police officers warmed my heart; especially in times such as these, it is so refreshing to see those in blue working together in a coed environment and building one another up while doing their level best to serve the community.

Gaining insight into the inner workings of law enforcement, trying to puzzle together the truth of the 3-year-old collision and how it relates to current happenings, and even being entertained by Almara’s pet iguana all make “Collision of Lies” a must-read for suspense aficionados as well as for anyone who enjoys an intriguing, clean story that will have readers questioning everything.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Review
5 Stars
Horse Sense and Contentment
Two Steps Forward - Suzanne Woods Fisher

Able to be read as a standalone, Suzanne Woods Fisher’s “Two Steps Forward” is the third and final book in the Deacon’s Family series. Having read the previous book but not the first one, I was still able to follow along without any trouble. This is one aspect of Fisher’s writing that I appreciate the most, that the characters are fluid throughout the various series, yet the books can be read out of order. Appended to the front of this story is a cast of characters list, which I always find helpful, particularly in novels like this that do have repeating figures.

Horses are among my favorite animals, second only to dogs, and I loved their presence in “Two Steps Forward.” While it isn’t, of course, unusual to feature horses in some capacity in an Amish novel, this is the first book I’ve read that dealt with the Amish running a horse-breeding farm. Sylvie King makes for an interesting heroine, not because she rebels against her community’s rules or values, but for the fact that she has a way with animals. She is a horse whisperer of sorts. Furthermore, she is a single mother and widow who can manage the animals and her little boy with patience and gentleness. She makes an interesting contrast to Jimmy Fisher, who worked on a ranch yet doesn’t have the same instinctual aptitude that she does. Edith, Jimmy’s faultfinding mother, makes life harder for Sylvie as Sylvie works to clean up the outbuildings and property of Rising Star Farm.

Through Sylvie’s story and the related stories of other characters readers will recognize from prior books, Fisher demonstrates the self-sufficiency, determination, grace, and unwavering loyalty of the Amish. Discussion questions at the end of the book take readers deeper and are worthwhile whether reading in a group or individually.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Review
4 Stars
Child of Prophecy Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  Child of Prophecy

Author: T.E. Bradford

Genre:  YA Fantasy

Release Date: August 31, 2018

How far would you go to fit in? Another world?

Fifteen-year-old Nova Hawthorne has a unique trait that sets her apart, yet she wants nothing more than to be normal and fit in.

She soon finds out that there’s a very real reason why she feels so out of place in this world—she’s from another one. And prophecy says she is destined to destroy them both.

Armed only with a magic she does not yet understand and the synesthesia no one else does, she must race to figure out how to stop prophecy from unfolding, find a father she’s never met and discover who she really is. Is it truly our differences that make us who we are? How can you be strong when you’re broken? And what happens when your actions bring about the very destruction you’ve been fighting to prevent?



Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author

 


Tracy is a writer, singer-songwriter, cancer survivor and proud wife and mother. Her speculative fiction stories have featured in publications such as Deep Magic, including the Best of Deep Magic collection. Her Divide Series books, a Teen Fantasy series debuted in 2018 with Child of Prophecy – Book One. Child of Destiny – Book Two is set to release in November 2019. Her short-story Written in the Stars, a Kindled Legends story, was a number one new release and International Best Seller.

Born and raised in Central New York, Tracy will tell you her parents gave her the two best tools in her arsenal by reading to her as a child and raising her in a Christian household. In spite of the long CNY winters she continues to live there with the husband God created especially for her, and the son who is her forever best story.

“I believe true magic can be found in the things we see and do every day. Life is hard enough. Stories should transport us to another time and place. A magical place, where we can stretch out a hand and touch the wonder of God’s universe.” –T.E. Bradford

 More from Tracy

 

You’ll find music woven into nearly all my stories. This is especially true in the Divide Series books, as our heroine Nova has something called Synesthesia – a condition where your senses may overlap or cross. In Nova’s case, she can see sounds. Cool, right? On her journeys, she’ll encounter plenty of musical elements, but perhaps none as special as…

THE SONG OF THE HIGH KING

There is a King on a great golden throne
His beauty and magic so great none can know
He waits and He watches His children below
Waiting to see them all come safely home.

Travel high! Travel low! Travel through that great light
In the vastness between, where His city shines bright
Travel with Him and you’ll travel no more
Rest on the sands of His celestial shore.

Drink from the fountain that never runs dry
Eat from His table’s bountiful supply
Look in His face, trace the lines of His scars
They never were His wounds… they always were ours.

Travel high! Travel low! Travel through that great light
In the vastness between, where His city shines bright
Travel with Him and you’ll travel no more
Rest on the sands of His celestial shore.
Rest on the sands of His celestial shore.
 

My Review

 
As I’ve mentioned before, fantasy is low on the list of genres I read. I have always preferred historical fiction instead, so I’ve been purposely challenging myself to read more books this year to fill in the gaps of my reading repertoire. For the most part, it’s been a gratifying experience. Fantasy is still not my favorite genre, but I have enjoyed reading some of it occasionally, including this book.

T.E. Bradford does not shy away from confronting and dispelling common fantasy myths with her novel, “Child of Prophecy.” The first in The Divide series, this story is geared toward teenagers and young adults, but I enjoyed it and think that other adults will also. This is an intricate story, but its complexity does not make it difficult to read. I was quickly drawn into the story and wanted to know what happened next and how things played out. I have heard of synesthesia before and find it utterly fascinating. I can generally “read” people and pick up their emotions because of my personality type, but nothing like what Nova Hawthorne does in the story. I sympathized with Nova and how she had a difficult time standing up for herself, and I really loved that Bradford portrayed characters with disabilities. Including bullying makes this a truly timely book that young people will be able to relate to and engage with. The Christian element is subtle, with echoes of C.S. Lewis, and I would have liked to see it presented a bit more boldly, but overall I enjoyed this foray into the world of Thea.  

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops

 

Rebecca Tews, February 21

Through the Fire Blogs, February 22

For the Love of Literature, February 23

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 24

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 25

Artistic Nobody, February 26 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, February 26

Texas Book-aholic, February 27

Inklings and notions, February 28

For Him and My Family, February 29

Wishful Endings, March 1 (Author Interview)

April Hayman, Author, March 1

Blogging With Carol, March 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 3

Pause for Tales, March 4

Blossoms and Blessings, March 5 (Author Interview)

 

Giveaway

 

To celebrate her tour, Tracy is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card, as well as the prequel and a couple of other surprise goodies (think musical)!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
5 Stars
“She simply had to find the blessings, even in the bleakest conditions.”
The Land Beneath Us - Sarah Sundin

Historical fiction is my favorite genre, and over the years I’ve read many books set during WWII. As with any subject, having a familiarity with this period leads to recognizing plots and events and being able to predict what will follow. Generally speaking, stories don’t catch me off guard. However, with “The Land Beneath Us,” Sarah Sundin manages to do just that, so that I felt as if I were reading a suspenseful thriller and could not turn the pages quickly enough. I have not read the previous books in this series, but that did not at all impede my enjoyment of this one.

With “The Land Beneath Us”, Sarah Sundin delivers a breathtaking novel that is both beautiful and tragic. She deals with disquieting issues not often found in Christian historical fiction, yet she does so with grace. While the events themselves are disturbing, they are not described in detail and do not leave readers feeling sullied. Instead, through the faith of her characters and the ways in which the Lord works in their lives, these ordeals become inspiring testimonies. Leah Jones, in particular, spoke to my heart and is now among my list of favorite heroines. Her love of books and libraries resonated with me, and I felt a kinship with her because I am petite also. Despite her small stature, she manages to make a powerful impact; as Clay Paxton remarks, “For such a young and tiny thing, she had strength at her core.” Despite growing up as an orphan and dealing with abandonment her entire life, her heart has not become hardened and she has an effusive zest for life and remarkable resilience. Her own statement reveals her disposition: “There are even more blessings I can’t yet see. But I will. I only have to watch.” She is not, however, perfect, and I am thankful that Sundin shows how Leah does make mistakes like the rest of us but comes through them because she has the Holy Spirit within her to guide her.  

Faith, hope, and love do indeed shine through in this novel. There are allusions to the Biblical stories of Leah and the prodigal son, and forgiveness is one of the main themes. Sundin expresses so well the corroding effect that unforgiveness has on our lives, and she also addresses the issue of trust. Her characters are wonderful witnesses and complements to one another, teaching by example in a beautiful demonstration of the body of Christ. The promise of Jesus echoes throughout “The Land Beneath Us”, assuring us that “I will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you” (John 14:18).

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All opinions are my own.

Review
4 Stars
Hearts Set Free Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  Hearts Set Free

Author: Jess Lederman

Genre:  Christian Literary Fiction

Release Date: March 12th, 2019

Join me on a journey from the darkness of doubt to triumphant faith and from the ache of loneliness to everlasting love…

“Bold and forthright writing that would set any heart on fire.”–Christian blogger Miranda A. Uyeh
“Readers of inspirational fiction will love this moving story that affirms the power of God’s mercy.”
–Publisher’s Weekly

In 1930, the rag-tag riffraff of a railway stop called Las Vegas need a fighting man to shepherd their tiny church after their pastor is murdered. Might David Gold, a washed-up boxer and Bible-school dropout who fights as the Pummelin’ Preacher, be the answer to their prayers?

At the same time, Luke, a native Alaskan boy, is on a quest to find his father, who has abandoned his family for a beautiful woman his warrior mother vows to kill. The journey of mother and son will lead them to the Nevada desert, and to truths–and terrors–of which they’d never dreamed.

In 2011, Science Cable T.V. producer Tim Faber is determined to prove that mankind has no need of God, while his lover, Joan Reed, strives to regain the faith of her youth. They’re bound for Las Vegas to meet with a 99-year-old man who holds the key to a mystery they must solve–and answers that will forever change their lives.

Their stories will come together at a little house of worship known as the Church of the Heart Set Free.

“I was mesmerized by the characters and how everything unfolded and linked together…”
–Just One More Paragraph (Musings of a Christian Wife)



Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

 


After I graduated with a degree in music from Columbia University, a lust for expensive pianos drew me into an unexpected career in finance. It turned out that I had a knack for business; I gained much that the world had to offer and became a hedonist, a gambler who haunted the poker rooms of Las Vegas, and an arrogant atheist. I’ve written fiction for most of my life, and at one point I quit work to devote myself to writing a novel. During that time, my late first wife, Teri, and I lived in Paris, down the street from where Hemingway once lived, and later in the mountains of Idaho. But the novel was never published, for I was a man whose soul had not yet awakened, who did not yet have anything important to say. So I went back to the business world.

One day, when we were living in Dallas, Teri heard a radio interview with Francis Collins, an eminent scientist who wrote The Language of God, which tells the story of his journey from atheism to becoming a disciple of Christ. Collins’ book led us to the writings of C.S. Lewis and George MacDonald*, who became the midwives of our rebirth from above.

There’s no hiding from the Hound of Heaven, once He’s on your trail!

Several years later, Teri was diagnosed with ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease) and we left Dallas and the business world behind and moved to a small town in Alaska. There we looked out on the glory of God’s creation and read to our heart’s content during the last two years of her life. Faced with tragedy, we learned to trust utterly in Him, and He blessed us with the peace that surpasses all understanding.

It was after Teri’s death, while I was still living in the far north, that the idea for Hearts Set Free—which opens in the Alaska Territory in 1925was born. People who know that the novel contains autobiographical elements (and several historical characters) sometimes ask me, “How much of the story is true?’ And I answer, “Perhaps twenty percent—and the rest is even more true!” What drives my writing is the desire to convey truths that transform lives. Truths of the heart.

In 2013, I met a wonderful woman—my current wife, Ling—and soon we began talking about having children. “Impossible!” said our doctors. “According to your test results, there’s no chance at all, even using the latest techniques.” Of course, within two months of that pronouncement, Ling was pregnant with little David, who just turned three, and we subsequently adopted Daniel, who’s now twelve.

After David’s birth, we moved to southwest Washington. I’m currently at work on a novel set in Las Vegas in 1955, and, when I’m not writing or chasing my sons around, can usually be found at the piano playing Chopin nocturnes for Ling.

More from Jess

 

I first conceived of Hearts Set Free in the far frozen north, not long after my first wife, Teri, passed away. She had been diagnosed with ALS, an invariably fatal disease, when we were living in Dallas, and within a month we decided that I’d quit my job so we could move to a small town in Alaska. We bought a small house based on the view out of the living room windows; there we’d be able to spend the time she had left in peace, and gaze out at the glory of God’s creation.

Teri—a woman who untiringly searched for truth—was the inspiration for Joan Reed, one of the main characters in the book, and Alaska—the Last Frontier!—entered into the story as well. We were living not far from the headquarters of the Iditarod, the iconic thousand-mile dog sled race that takes place each year. The Iditarod was modeled after an amazing race against time which occurred in the icy darkness of an Alaskan winter in 1925, when dogsled was the only way to get diphtheria serum to the remote town of Nome and save ten thousand lives. Hearts Set Free begins with that dramatic event.

I put a lot of myself—the bad along with the good!—into other characters in Hearts Set Free. Up until I became a Christian, I had all of the arrogant narcissism of atheist Tim Faber, a T.V. producer intent on proving that mankind has no need of God. I also have the questioning spirit of David Gold, a Bible-school dropout turned boxer who is led by the Lord to become a heroic pastor, and of young Luke Noongwook, a native Alaskan who goes on a quest to find his missing father. Their need to understand difficult aspects of Scripture are based on a passionate desire to love God with all their heart and strength and soul and mind. As is mine!

As a young man, I’d been greatly impressed by E.L. Doctorow’s novel Ragtime, which blended fictional and historical characters, and I decided to use the same approach in Hearts Set Free. Parts of the novel are set in the early and mid-1900s (especially the 1930s), and Jack Johnson, the first black heavyweight champion of the world, and Georges Lemaitre, who was both a physicist and a priest—a man who corrected Albert Einstein, and is probably the greatest scientist of whom most people have never heard!—play important roles.

Finally, the novel is tribute to the beauty of Scripture and features many quotes from the Psalms. If you love compelling tales that combine mystery, adventure, and romance, and enjoy thinking deeply about your faith, I think you’ll find it’s just the book for you!
 

My Review

 
With a book such as this, there is so much contained within the pages that it is difficult to know where to begin. Jess Lederman truly pens an epic novel with “Hearts Set Free”, one that explores and plumbs the depths of the human condition through a variety of characters ranging from 1914 to 2011. The first segment of the novel is, I think, the most challenging. I struggled with the abundance of characters and time periods, and as someone who is terrible with names, it took me a long time to adjust and begin to follow each character’s thread. It is interesting to see how they interconnect over the years. Even this novel’s layout seems indicative of its message; there are four segments, which mirror man’s fall through the new heaven and new earth, Genesis to Revelation. Other topics also find ground here, including scientific discoveries and current events. I loved the surprise appearance by Amelia Earhart! In many ways, you could say that this novel is Luke’s story, as he is 99 years old and still holding onto the memories that have shaped his life and, more importantly, his faith.

“Hearts Set Free” is partly allegorical, drawing upon the characters’ own memories as well as the Bible. There are multiple scenes throughout the novel that clearly reflect Biblical events, such as Jacob wrestling with God, which brings up another point. I do take issue with the profanity used in the text; while I understand that people do talk that way, I do not expect to see it in Christian literature. An overarching theme throughout the narrative is the importance of planting seeds of faith; only the Lord can save, but as Christians we should be generously planting the seeds of hope and faith. It is these life-affirming words and actions that cause some of the characters to question and to take the first steps forward toward salvation. One of the passages that tugged at my heart the most, and which sums up the novel and reinforces God’s love for us, was the initial conversation between Sister Anna and Yura: “‘You did this for your God?’” my mother asked her. “‘No, Yura, God did this for me.’”

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops

 

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 20

For the Love of Literature, February 21

Artistic Nobody, February 22 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 23

Older & Smarter?, February 24

Inklings and notions, February 25

A Baker’s Perspective, February 26 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 27

deb’s Book Review, February 28

Christian Bookshelf Reviews, February 29 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, March 1

Godly Book Reviews, March 2

Through the Fire Blogs, March 3 (Author Interview)

Locks, Hooks and Books, March 4

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate his tour, Jess is giving away the grand prize package of an autographed copy of Hearts Set Free plus a $50 Amazon gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
3 Stars
Fateful Fall Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book


Book:  Fateful Fall

Author: Erin Unger

Genre:  Christian Romantic Suspense

Release Date: August 9, 2019

Private Investigator Ava Worthington and her partners head to the mountains to solve the death of a farmer’s son who was discovered murdered in an outhouse on the property. Without local cowboy Cory’s protection, Ava won’t get the chance to follow leads as the killer tries to stop her investigation. But Ava’s falling for Cory against her better judgment. She should be working and not pining after a cowboy. And Cory doesn’t want a relationship. His successful career was destroyed by a woman he trusted, and he won’t make the same mistake twice.

One suspect after another is cleared from Ava’s list until she’s sure she has the real killer targeted in her sights, but he’s hunting her, too. How will Ava and Cory find the killer and admit their love before they are buried under a mountain of secrets?


Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

 


Erin Unger was raised in the hills of Virginia, exploring abandoned houses and reading the scariest books she could find. After marrying so young it would make a great romance novel, she has enjoyed an exciting life with her hubby. But her fast-paced life sometimes rivals the suspense in her books thanks to all her mostly grown children and a couple grandkids.

More from Erin

 

Come join us for the best Fall Apple Festival at Stoneridge Lodge and Farm! We’re waiting to welcome you to our delightful event. Take in the scent of hot apple cider and apple butter simmering over a warm fire. Check out the best hay maze this side of the mountain. And catch an act or two amongst the trees and river, where country dancers will kick up their heels and entertain you all day. And jump aboard our hayride, which trails through the prettiest parts of the Blue Ridge mountains this side of Virginia.

And don’t forget the delectable homemade meals ready for purchase. You’ll get the best funnel cakes and fried cookies you ever had, too.

But please do forgive the murder or two happening in the background. We have Ava Worthington and her investigation team on the books to take care of it. You’re probably not in danger…really. It’s just a family issue. You’re not related to the owners, are you? Because you should be fine if you’re not… Anyway, don’t let a little thing like murder keep you from making our annual fall festival a family tradition.
 
 

My Review

 
Heavy on the romance aspect and light on suspense, Erin Unger’s “Fateful Fall” contains a good message and is a clean read but was not my cup of tea. For the most part, I am not a romance reader, especially not when it comes to contemporary romance; it was the suspense angle of this book that captured my interest, as well as being set during autumn. This is an easy-to-read mystery that begins with the main character and her business partners traveling to the mountains in order to pursue answers in the case of a murdered man. I appreciated the independence that the female characters displayed and the fact that they formed their own private investigation service. The story is action-packed from the moment the trio arrives in Tennessee, and I loved the mountain setting. Most importantly, I give kudos to the author for including the Christian spiritual element quietly but effectively. As Ava declares early on, “Luck? There was no such thing as luck. God had His fingers in everything, and I was more than glad to offer Him praise for saving me from the wild.”

The issues that I had with the book are not grievous, and I am glad that I read it. The characters came across as immature to me, and at times snarky. This could just be my personal preference; the conversations and interactions of the characters struck me as odd. I was disappointed that Ava was so quick to turn her attention to Cory, and the subsequent lacking of communication with her team.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops

 

 

Giveaway

 

To celebrate her tour, Erin is giving away the grand prize of a $45 Amazon gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
5 Stars
Cold Case Connection Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book


Book:  Cold Case Connection

Author: Dana Mentink

Genre:  Romantic Suspense

Release Date: February 1, 2020

Convinced his sister’s death wasn’t an accident, private investigator Sergio Ross is determined to catch her killer. But with all the clues hinting at a connection to another unsolved murder, he has to join forces with Helen Pike—a woman linked to both deaths—to find the truth. Can they follow the cold evidence trail to get justice…before they become the next victims?

Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author


Dana Mentink is a two time American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award winner, a Romantic Times Reviewer’s Choice Award and a Holt Medallion winner. She is a national bestselling author of over forty titles in the suspense and lighthearted romance genres. She is pleased to write for Harlequin’s Love Inspired Suspense, Harlequin Heartwarming and Harvest House. Besides writing, she busies herself teaching third grade. Mostly, she loves to be home with Papa Bear, teen bear cubs affectionately nicknamed Yogi and Boo Boo, Junie, the  nutty terrier, and a chubby box turtle. You can connect with Dana via her website at danamentink.com, on Facebook, YouTube (Author Dana Mentink) and Instagram (dana_mentink.)

More from Dana

 

Cold Case Connection was really fun to write because it’s Helen’s story. She’s an intelligent, sensitive woman who is the sister to the men living on the Roughwater Ranch. Liam is her biological brother, but she’s just as close to Chad and Mitch who might as well be blood relatives. In this novel, Helen has to relive the worst moment of her teenage life, the night when a mysterious murder occurred during a teen prank. Helen is going to have to face the past in order to preserve her future. Cowboys, a case gone cold, a coastal ranch and a whole lot of danger…I hope you will enjoy the ride!
 

My Review

 
“They’d lost their childhood that night, all of them, any last vestiges of innocence had been sucked away by those dark tunnels.”

Two murders from among a group of former high school friends, one in the past and one more recently, spark this “Cold Case Connection” by Dana Mentink. This is an author I’ve not read before, but I will now be watching for her books. This one puts me in mind of the Nancy Drew series that I grew up reading, with romantic interest slowly developing around the heroine, who finds herself in multiple dangerous situations that increase in peril the closer she gets to the truth. Some of the scenes in this book caused a chill, with enough romance to lighten the atmosphere and provide relief from the tension.

Weaving together two crimes related yet with fifteen years between them, Mentink strategically uses characters and events to ultimately showcase God’s enduring love and forgiveness. Blaming herself for negligence after finding out her friend is dead, Helen Pike has not truly healed and moved on. It doesn’t help that her friend’s brother, Sergio Ross, also holds her partially responsible, a wound that reopens when Sergio shows up to conduct his own investigation of sorts. With danger dogging their heels, this unlikely duo doesn’t have much time to solve the “Cold Case Connection.”

Christian suspense is always a treat because it offers the thrill and mystery without undue violence and in a clean environment. No scene is wasted, and there is undeniable suspense throughout. With this particular book, adding in an extended timeline and previous history between the characters enhances the mystery and intrigue. The lines are not always clear-cut, as in real life, but the promise of hope and deliverance never wavers.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.

Blog Stops

 

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, February 14

Among the Reads, February 14

Through the Fire Blogs, February 14

The Avid Reader, February 15

Texas Book-aholic, February 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 16

Inklings and notions, February 16

janicesbookreviews, February 16

Betti Mace, February 17

She Lives to Read, February 17

Genesis 5020, February 17

For the Love of Literature, February 18

For Him and My Family, February 18

My Devotional Thoughts, February 19

Reading Is My SuperPower, February 19

Just Your Average reviews, February 19

Remembrancy, February 20

Older & Smarter?, February 20

Blogging With Carol, February 20

deb’s Book Review, February 21

Bigreadersite, February 21

EmpowerMoms, February 21

Blossoms and Blessings, February 22

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, February 22

Christian Bookaholic, February 23

KarenSueHadley, February 23

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, February 23

Emily Yager, February 24

Christian Bookshelf Reviews, February 24

Pause for Tales, February 24

Simple Harvest Reads, February 25 (Guest Review from Mindy Houng)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 25

Maureen’s Musings, February 26

Hallie Reads, February 26

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, February 26

Livin’ Lit, February 27

To Everything There Is A Season, February 27

Daysong Reflections, February 27

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, Dana is giving away the grand prize of a Mentink giveaway bundle, including a bag, a copy of the book, and an Amazon gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Leaving Texas Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book


Book:  Leaving Texas

Author: Caryl McAdoo

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: January 2, 2020

I know the plans I have for you, plans for good, not evil.

Cruel is the illusion of love. Robbed of her true love by his mean-spirited mother, Charity is given no choice but to leave Texas and follow her Prince Charming to the Golden State. Instantly attracted to her, Morgan agrees to help the young beauty on her journey, but where all other ladies paled after first blush, his initial fascination only deepens with every turn of the wagon’s wheels. Though obvious to all those around the two—how perfect Morgan and Charity were for each other—will the hard-headed, strong-willed daughter of Liberty O’Neal Harrell ever realize it?   

Click HERE for your copy!

About the Author


Praying her story gives God glory, award-winning author Caryl McAdoo continues prolificity with her new Cross Timbers Romance Family Saga series. Readers around the world enjoy her best-selling novels and shower them with 5-Star ratings galore. With forty-eight titles—and counting—her love for writing is obvious; the lady loves singing the new songs the Lord gives her as well! (Check out YouTube). Caryl gave Ron four children and the couple shares eighteen grandsugars. The McAdoos live in the woods south of Clarksville, the seat of Red River County, in far Northeast Texas, waiting expectantly for God to open the next door.

More from Caryl

 

As my second family saga series—Cross Timbers Romance—grows, and the children of Book One GONE TO TEXAS come into adulthood, I fall more in love with these characters. This story—Book Four in the series, LEAVIN’ TEXAS, takes readers on another wagon train that historically left right about the same time of year as its early spring setting from Red River County, heading for California in 1850.

LEAVIN’ TEXAS is Charity O’Neal’s story wherein she determines to follow her Prince Charming, Eberhart ‘Hart’ de Vecchi, to California to start her new life with him there—no matter the naysayers or rough trails ahead. But as so often is the case, our plans and those God has in place for us don’t always correlate.

Many times, we’ve prayed about it—what we want Him to do, how we expect everything to turn out—and feel certain we are in His will. I personally thank God for praying mothers, friends, and grandmothers who perhaps see us heading in a wrong direction and beseech Him to guide us in His way, not our own.

My life has benefitted from such praying women.
So does Charity O’Neal’s.
I imagine yours has as well!

I love the well-known verse in Jeremiah! “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” Jeremiah 29:11 Especially the ‘expected end’ part. I find great comfort in knowing His thoughts—or plans—are of peace and not evil, and that He intends to give us an expected end!

I hope you enjoy LEAVING TEXAS and will take time to review it!
BLESSINGS!
 

Author Interview

 

Welcome, Caryl!

 

Sarah, thank you so much for inviting me to your blog! I’m thrilled to be here and have the opportunity to meet your friends and readers!

What would you say is your interesting writing quirk?

Well, I suppose you might call it a quirk, considering I’m an author. I’m giggling now, telling on myself like this, but I never took typing in school. I didn’t want to be a secretary—not that there’s anything wrong with being a secretary, I just couldn’t imagine being chained to a desk all day; I wanted to have a secretary!
So anyway, the quirk is that I type by the Bible. More specifically, by Matthew 7:7 that says, “Seek and ye shall find!”

Is there a particular literary period that you’re drawn to (Regency, Victorian, Romantic, Modernism, etc.)? Why?


You know, the whole world loves Texas! Do you know how we have Renaissance Festivals and Civil War Reenactments in our country? Well all around the world, people in other countries have Wild West events like those where vendors dress up like cowboys and Indians and have a blast!

I live in Texas and am drawn to its early days, a period where generations not so far removed worked hard, loved true, and worshipped God. Women dressed modestly (unless they were soiled doves) and kept the home fires going, while men went out and provided for their families!

 

Daughters were highly valued as a great treasure and chaperoned when courters started calling. The norm in that era was remaining pure until marriage. Mothers could let the children run free outside and play all day, coming home before dark without worrying they would be snatched up by a bad man.

I love those days and the values they adhered to!


Describe your book in five words.


Missionary, Miracles, Adoption, Obedience, Overcoming

Who is your biggest inspiration?


My husband is my co-author on all the stories and biggest inspiration by far in my life. He is zenith of all my heroes rolled into one and the most Christ-like man I know. Don’t you love my heroes? See how blessed I am? And it’s our joint love of God that inspires us to write our characters.

I pray my story gives God glory!

What advice would you give to aspiring writers?


Hear from God, study to show yourself approved, then start writing and don’t quit! The more you study before you write, the less rewrites you’ll have to do, but re-write, you will even though rewriting isn’t nearly as fun as writing! Remember this tough---Only God writes in stone, the rest of us rewrite!

P.S. (a blatant commercial advertisement) STORY & STYLE, The Craft of Writing Creative Fiction is a great book packed with everything I’ve learned in all the years up to its publication. It’s written in an easy-to-understand, conversational format with lots of examples!

 

Thanks again, Sarah, for inviting me to come visit! I appreciate you choosing to participate in my Leaving Texas Blog Tour with Celebrate Lit! Blessings!

 

My pleasure! Thank you so much for joining us!

 

Blog Stops

 

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 13

deb’s Book Review, February 14

Texas Book-aholic, February 15

Chas Ray’s Book Nerd Corner, February 16

Inklings and notions, February 17

For the Love of Literature, February 18 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 19

Betti Mace, February 20

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, February 21

janicesbookreviews, February 22

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 23

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, February 24

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 25 (Author Interview)

Artistic Nobody, February 26 (Guest Reviewer Donna Cline)

 

Giveaway

 

To celebrate her tour, Caryl is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Amazon gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
Lost in the Storm Review and GIVEAWAY!

 

About the Book

 


Book:  Lost in the Storm

Author: Tamera Lynn Kraft

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: August 1, 2019

Will war bring them love or will they be Lost in the Storm!

Lavena, a journalist during the Civil War, wants to become a war correspondent. She finally gets her chance, but there’s a catch. She has to get an interview from a war hero who has refused to tell his story to every other journalist, and she has to accomplish this impossible task in a month or she’ll lose her job.

Captain Cage, the war hero, has a secret that will destroy his military career and reputation. Now, a new journalist is trying to get him to tell what he’s been hiding. He wants to ignore her, but from the moment she came into camp, he can’t get her out of his mind.

Leading up to the turbulent Battles for the city of Chattanooga, will Lavena and Cage find the courage to love and forgive, or will they be swept away by their past mistakes that don’t want to stay buried?

Meet the Ladies of Oberlin, the causes they’re willing to fight for, and the men who capture their hearts.



Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author

 


Award winning author Tamera Lynn Kraft has always loved adventures. She loves to write historical fiction set in the United States because there are so many stories in American history. There are strong elements of faith, romance, suspense and adventure in her stories. Alice’s NotionsRed Sky Over AmericaLost in the StormResurrection of Hope, and Soldier’s Heart are among her published works.

Tamera been married for 40 years to the love of her life, Rick, and has two married adult children and three grandchildren. She has been a children’s pastor for over 20 years. She is the leader of a ministry called Revival Fire for Kids where she mentors other children’s leaders, teaches workshops, and is a children’s ministry consultant and children’s evangelist and has written children’s church curriculum. She is a recipient of the 2007 National Children’s Leaders Association Shepherd’s Cup for lifetime achievement in children’s ministry.

More from Tamera

 

History is my Passion

I love to read all genres of Christian fiction, but when I go to write, it always ends up being a Christian historical. The reason for that is I have a passion for history. I love to read about historical events, and frequently, I begin wondering what it would be like to live through those chaotic events in history. Out of that thought process, my characters and my stories take on a life of their own.

For instance, my series, Ladies of Oberlin, came out of reading about the great Christian women who advance social and spiritual movements in the late 1800s. I found over and over that the common denominator of these women was they all had a connection with Oberlin College, the first college that allow women and black to receive degrees alongside white men before the Civil War. I gained a treasure trove of research from a college only an hour away from where I lived.

As I researched Oberlin, I found out it was in the middle of every social and spiritual movement of the time. Charles Finney, the fiery Second Great Awakening evangelist, was the president of the college. Ninety percent of missionaries sent overseas between 1860 and 1900 were graduates of the college. Many of the women’s suffrage leaders, women’s educational leaders, women doctors and scholars, abolitionists, and prohibitionist leaders were from Oberlin College. At that point, I knew I wanted to tell their stories in my novels. I decided to write three stories covering three college roommates.

My first novel in the series set shortly before the Civil War was Red Sky Over America, the story of America Leighton, a woman abolitionist who was studying to become a missionary in China. She decided she couldn’t make a stand for the Gospel in China until she confronted her father to free his slaves. To make things more interesting, her love interest has plans of his own in Kentucky. The results were explosive as you can imagine.

The second in the series, released August first, is Lost in the Storm set during the Civil War. Lavena Falcon is determined to be an independent woman who advances the causes she believes in by being a journalist. Her greatest desire is to travel to where the heroic Ohio Seventh Regiment is fighting and report about these brave men. The problem is if she doesn’t get an interview with an illusive captain who doesn’t want to talk to reporters, she’ll lose her job. It doesn’t help that she’s attracted to him.

The third novel, due to release late next year, is set shortly after the Civil War in Northeast Ohio. Betsy Teagan’s husband is back from the war, but things aren’t going according to plan. He is haunted by the war and finds solace in the local saloon drinking himself into oblivion. She tries everything to help him including protesting in front of the bar.
 

My Review

 

A seminal period in American history, the Civil War stands as a stark reminder of the cost of division and enslavement. In an increasingly polarized world, remembering the transgressions of the past becomes ever more important in order to avoid falling into similar patterns of wickedness. This is one of the ways that literature serves society, through both nonfiction and fiction, and it’s one of the reasons that historical fiction is my favorite genre. As such, I am always on the lookout for new authors to add to my to-read list, and I am delighted to have found one in Tamera Lynn Kraft and this second book in the Daughters of Oberlin series. It can stand alone, but there is some background mentioned in this story.

Opening in September 1863 in Cleveland, Ohio, “Lost in the Storm” immediately appealed to me for a variety of reasons. As an Ohio native, I am somewhat familiar with the geography, and on a more abstract level, I was drawn to the title and cover. Before long, the characters became dear to me as well. I empathized with Betsy Teagan in the first few chapters and hope to read more of her story in the next book. Lavena Falcon is an early suffragette and the sole female reporter for The Cleveland Leader. A graduate of Oberlin College, she is determined to become the war correspondent for both laudable and personal reasons. As the story unfolds, the anger that she harbors in her heart collides with unexpected attraction. Similarly, Cage skirts the issue of talking about the event that made him a war hero. Both are hiding shameful events from their pasts that continue to haunt their futures and the present.

Kraft also skillfully writes about the privations of war without employing graphic details. Indeed, “War caused so much heartache.” This was the first I had heard of sutlers, and these merchants certainly harmed those they served, offering the temptation to fall into alcohol and fornication. I felt sorrow and compassion for the soldiers in this story, including Nate, for the horrors that they experienced at such young ages, for being there for their fellow soldiers on both sides and often losing their friends. Most of all, I appreciate the hope and redemption that the author weaves into the narrative, demonstrating that God truly never leaves nor forsakes us, and that He is able to turn every situation into good for those who love Him.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.


Blog Stops

 

Through the Fire Blogs, February 8

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 9

Texas Book-aholic, February 10

deb’s Book Review, February 11

Betti Mace, February 12

Inklings and notions, February 13

Artistic Nobody, February 14 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 15

Simple Harvest Reads, February 16 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 16

For the Love of Literature, February 17

My Devotional Thoughts, February 18

A Baker’s Perspective, February 19 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 20

By The Book, February 21 (Author Interview)

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, February 21

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, Tamera is giving away the grand prize package of a a $25 gift certificate and 3 paperbacks: Red Sky Over America, Lost in the Storm, and Forks in the Road!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

School of the Miraculous Spotlight and GIVEAWAY!
 
 

About the Book


Book:  School of the Miraculous

Author: Kynan Bridges

Genre: Non-fiction / Christian / Pentecostal & Charismatic

Release Date: December 20, 2019

Demystifying Miracles

What if you could experience something miraculous every day?

Many Christians think of miracles as rare events for a select and fortunate few. But miracles don’t have be something mysterious and out of reach. They don’t have to be the exception. Just as they were common in the early church, they can become common for you.

School of the MiraculousA Practical Guide to Walking in Daily Miracles by Dr. Kynan Bridges shows how every believer can develop a miracle mind-set, operate in miracles, and establish a lifestyle in which miraculous events occur.

Dr. Kynan has encountered many believers who are frustrated because they are not seeing evidence of God’s power in their circumstances. They have a growing desperation for more of His intervention in their lives. This book was designed to answer that cry for more.

The Holy Spirit is the Miracle Worker—but all miracles involve human participation in some way. Dr. Kynan reveals that our growing intimacy with God’s Spirit will lead us to see and participate in His miracles—living in His power and setting our expectations increasingly higher for His miraculous works in our lives. This practical guide for every believer is filled with ideas for personal application, encouraging testimonies, and spiritual activation prayers for tapping into the miraculous. Enroll in the School of the Miraculous today!



Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author

 


Dr. Kynan T. Bridges is the senior pastor of Grace & Peace Global Fellowship in Tampa, Florida. With a profound revelation of the Word of God and a dynamic teaching ministry, Dr. Bridges has revolutionized the lives of many in the body of Christ. Through his practical approach to applying the deep truths of the Word of God, he reveals the authority and identity of the new covenant believer. A highly sought speaker and published author of several books, including Invading the HeavensUnmasking the AccuserThe Power of Prophetic Prayer, and Kingdom Authority, Dr. Bridges is also a committed husband to Gloria and father of five beautiful children: Ella, Naomi, Isaac, Israel, and Anna.

More from Dr. Bridges

  • A miraculous way of life is a daily pursuit of the presence and power of God.
  • Signs and wonders are the spiritual advertisements of the power of God’s kingdom.
  • Power that is not recognized is power that is not released, and power that is not released is power that is not realized.
  • A prayer never prayed can never be answered, and a claim never placed can never be received!
  • Prayer is the spiritual life-force of the supernatural.
  • The anointing is the dynamic, yoke-destroying, burden-removing power of God working in and through us.
  • The attitude of expectancy is the atmosphere for miracles.
  • Action activates miracles. If you want to see a miraculous display of God’s power, act on His Word in faith, regardless of how you feel.
  • Jesus calls us beyond the place of fear into the place of faith, where we are empowered to live supernaturally.
  • There are certain spiritual benefits you can’t experience until you know and act upon who you are in God.
  • The more conscious and respectful you are of the presence of God, the more qualified you are to host the atmosphere of heaven.
  • Every time you proclaim the Word of God in faith, you conform your world to God’s Word. The more you proclaim, the more your life will reflect heaven.


Blog Stops

 

Texas Book-aholic, February 6

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 7

Vicky Sluiter, February 8 (Author Interview)

Inklings and notions, February 9

For Him and My Family, February 10

Simple Harvest Reads, February 11 (Author Interview)

Genesis 5020, February 12

deb’s Book Review, February 13

A Baker’s Perspective, February 14 (Author Interview)

Just the Write Escape, February 15

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 16

For the Love of Literature, February 17 (Author Interview)

Artistic Nobody, February 18 (Spotlight)

All 4 and About Books, February 19 (Author Interview)

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate his tour, Kynan is giving away the grand prize of a $25 Starbucks gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
Forgotten Faith Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book: Forgotten Faith

Author: Lauren Reeves

Genre: Non-fiction/Christian Devotional

Release Date: December 20, 2019

When Christians are challenged to explain what they believe and why, too many fall short. Do the majority of Christians feel true commitment to their faith anymore? Are they able to retain hope and perseverance when trials come? Or do they find themselves questioning God’s goodness? We live in a time where Christians seem to have forgotten their once strong faith.

In her book Forgotten Faith, popular podcaster and speaker Lauren Reeves teaches Genesis in a way that keeps her reader wanting more. She provides the foundation necessary to make the rest of the Bible make sense long after this book’s last page is turned. From cover to cover, the believer will find a fascinating study of Genesis and that Genesis and Revelation go hand in hand, painting a picture of the End Times and the reason for hope. The content has the ability to do for readers what might otherwise take years of study to unveil.

Forgotten Faith seeks to uncover treasures in Genesis that have long been hidden away, treasures that are relevant to today and the End of Days and have been waiting for the right time to be known—and the time is now.

Behold, I am coming soon . . . I am the Alpha and Omega,
the first and the last, the beginning and the end.
Revelation 22:12–13
 

 Click HERE to get your copy of the book!  

About the Author


Lauren Reeves loves to encourage the heart of a person into a deeper walk with Christ. She believes the mind informs the heart, so offering resources that are engaging and fascinating is necessary. Bible literacy ranks as one of the biggest ways she wants to influence the body of Christ, and she has an extraordinary gift for explaining intimidating theological ideas in easy-to-understand ways that keep a reader wanting more.
 
She is the co-host of Joy for the Journey Podcast with Tammy Whitehurst (www.joyforthejourneypodcast.com) and loves teaching God’s word, songwriting, and leading people into worship. She is currently completing her master’s degree in Christian apologetics from New Orleans Baptist Theological Seminary. She holds a bachelor of arts degree in religion from Baylor University. Lauren and her family live on a ranch in Texas. Learn more at www.laurenreeves.com.  

More from Lauren

 

Why did I write this book? Because I’ve often been told that learning and understanding Genesis is the foundation for the rest of the Bible. Much of the Christian worldview can be found there, which effects our decision making. But Genesis not only lays the foundation for the rest of the Bible, it is closely linked with Revelation, the last book in the Bible. Just about every time I’ve asked a Bible study group what they would like to learn about next, one of the number one answers was always “Revelation” or “End Times Events.” Even though for years people have been hungry to learn more about Revelation, most Christians and churches try to steer clear of this subject because the end times plan can be intimidating and is not 100 percent clear from Jesus’s revelation to John in that book. Since differing opinions often cause dissension, people understandably avoid areas of the Bible that aren’t absolutely clear. However, I believe those words would not have been given to us to read if we were supposed to avoid studying them. For that reason, I’ve taken the risk and written a book on Genesis that ties Genesis and Revelation together helping us to understand the end times plan more clearly. One thing I hope is clear in my book, though, is you don’t have to agree with my interpretation of end times events to glean great truths and a greater understanding of the Bible through my book. One stance had to be taken to talk about the subject in detail, but truly, if a reader does not agree with my stance, it’s not a big deal. There’s way more to the book than that. The goal was to make us all think on and around Genesis and Revelation to help us study it and have opportunity for the Holy Spirit to reveal truths to us through the Word. I hope other books are written from different end times stances so we can read and study from a different angle. The more we read from different angles, the more we grow in knowledge and understanding. It is my belief that being certain that there IS an end times plan is what helps anchor the hope of Christ firmly in our souls. If we don’t have a forward view, it is so easy to get stuck in the tunnel vision of the here and now, which can often appear hopeless. So, now more than ever before, Christians need to be studying the first book of the Bible to know what we believe and the last book of the Bible to know that there is an end times plan that is sure and wonderful. I hope this book stirs your soul in a unique way. It is deep, yet devotional. I really believe it is a book for today.
 

My Review

 

“Forgotten Faith” is an informative, thought-provoking study of Genesis and Revelation. Author Lauren Reeves ties this first and last book of the Bible together in order to demonstrate how the promises and hope extended by God in the beginning continue on to the End Times. She does this in part by pointing out parallels between the Biblical figures and events in Genesis and Revelation, and more broadly in the other books of the New Testament. As Reeves explains, “The Old Testament contains the physical representations of the spiritual realities found in the New Testament…The Old Testament records the physical stories that actually happened so they could be picture lessons to help us understand the spiritual realities under the new covenant in Jesus.”

This book makes some very stimulating points and connections that would serve a study group well, although it can also be approached privately in a devotional style. Reeves takes readers through each of the main stories in Genesis, offering insight into details that might have been overlooked. For instance, she points out that in Eden, the serpent targeted Eve first because as a woman she is the one through whom the Messiah would ultimately come. With regard to Cain and Abel, she discusses how Cain also had “fruit issues” like his mother, thinking that he could come before God with a better offering than the one God had already ordained. Later, she compares Nimrod and the Tower of Babel to “A Tale of Two Cities”, remarking that “The first city is Jerusalem, the city of the living God and of Christ. The second is Babylon, the city of our Enemy—the father of the antichrist.” This is one of the aspects of this book that I appreciate the most, the ability to make these kinds of connections and then return to the Word itself and develop clearer wisdom and understanding.

Connecting Genesis and Revelation seems to have been executed rather quickly at the end of the book, but again the insights are intriguing. I enjoyed the charts that Reeves includes a few times in the text; they would be even more impactful in the print version because the text was very small and difficult to read on my Kindle. She does list the interesting similarities between Joseph in Genesis and Jesus toward the end of the book. Throughout the narrative, she seeks to answer common challenges posed to the Bible. There are a few points that I do not entirely agree with, but I nevertheless found this to be a timely, easy-to-read study. Overall, “Forgotten Faith” serves as an edifying book that reminds readers to keep fighting the good fight and to remain strong in the faith.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through Celebrate Lit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.


Blog Stops

 

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 3

Blossoms and Blessings, February 4 (Author Interview)

Godly Book Reviews, February 5

deb’s Book Review, February 6

Texas Book-aholic, February 7

Through the Fire Blogs, February 8 (Author Interview)

Inklings and notions, February 9

Christian Bookshelf Reviews, February 10 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 11

Mary Hake, February 12

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 13 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 14

For the Love of Literature, February 15

Artistic Nobody, February 16 (Author Interview)

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, Lauren is giving away the grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Good Grief Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  Good Grief

Author: Sue Borrows LaRue

Genre:  Religion/Christian Life/ Death, Grief, Bereavement

Release Date: August 13, 2019

This is a true story of love, loss and new life. Suzie Borrows battled for her husband’s life praying for a miracle. God answered her, but not in the way she imagined. He had a plan that exceeded her dreams, and through undeniable revelations His purpose became her purpose.

Click HERE to get your copy.

About the Author

 


Suzie moved from N. Ireland to America as a child, accepted Jesus at 11, married the preacher’s son at 18, had two children, and a loving marriage for 32 years. Nothing she had experienced prepared her for the devastation she would face. She depended completely on God for comfort and direction. Which led her to begin a widows group, Boston radio show, www.sueborrows.com and www.YouTube.com/WidowsWednesday. Suzie now lives in Westport, MA with her husband Bruce.
 

More from Sue

 

What do you do when writing a book was never on your radar? Answer, you write it in tune with the Holy Spirit in three weeks! An amazing hand-written letter from God, original poetry, and prophetic words from the Lord delivered to my doorstep and so much more! You are never alone when you are hurting or grieving and if you allow Him, God will be undeniably present and you will know His heart for you.
 

Author Interview

 

When/how did you decide to become a writer?

 

It’s funny but I never wanted to become a writer. The Holy Spirit prompted me after much trying to complete this work.

 

Describe your book in five words.

 

Moving, Factual, Humorous, Encouraging, Inspirational

 

What are your hobbies?

 

I love fixer upper types of jobs, organizing etc. It does me a world of good to take something that someone else says “there’s no way to make that room look any better” to “are you kidding me is this the same space?” I love trash to treasure like yard sales.

 

Do you prefer traditional books, ebooks, or audiobooks?

 

Definitely traditional. I love to write my thoughts or ideas in there, mark the whole thing up. There is something more personal I guess about holding it in your hand.

 

If you could live inside a book, which one would it be?

 

When I read this question immediately the book that came to mind was, “My Time in Heaven” by Richard Sigmund. The thought of being in heaven and experiencing all the things that the Lord says in His word that are waiting for us is almost overwhelming. Someday it will be my reality.

 


Blog Stops

 

Texas Book-aholic, February 4

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 5

Vicky Sluiter, February 6 (Author Interview)

Inklings and notions, February 7

For Him and My Family, February 8

deb’s Book Review, February 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 10

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 11 (Author Interview)

Lots of Helpers, February 12

CarpeDiem, February 13

A Reader’s Brain, February 14

For the Love of Literature, February 15 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 16

Artistic Nobody, February 17 (Author Interview)

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour. Sue is giving away the grand prize package of a $25 Amazon Gift card and a paperback copy of the book Good Grief “A True Story of Love, Loss, and New Life”!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.