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
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.
 

 

Review
5 Stars
Waltz in the Wilderness Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  Waltz in the Wilderness

Author: Kathleen Denly

Genre:  Christian Historical Romance

Release Date: February 4, 2020

She’s desperate to find her missing father. His conscience demands he risk all to help.

Eliza Brooks is haunted by her role in her mother’s death, so she’ll do anything to find her missing pa—even if it means sneaking aboard a southbound ship. When those meant to protect her abandon and betray her instead, a family friend’s unexpected assistance is a blessing she can’t refuse.

Daniel Clarke came to California to make his fortune, and a stable job as a San Francisco carpenter has earned him more than most have scraped from the local goldfields. But it’s been four years since he left Massachusetts and his fiancé is impatient for his return. Bound for home at last, Daniel Clarke finds his heart and plans challenged by a tenacious young woman with haunted eyes. Though every word he utters seems to offend her, he is determined to see her safely returned to her father. Even if that means risking his fragile engagement.

When disaster befalls them in the remote wilderness of the Southern California mountains, true feelings are revealed, and both must face heart-rending decisions. But how to decide when every choice before them leads to someone getting hurt?


Click HERE for your copy! 

About the Author

 


Kathleen Denly lives in sunny Southern California with her loving husband, four young children, and two cats. As a member of the adoption and foster community, children in need are a cause dear to her heart and she finds they make frequent appearances in her stories. When she isn’t writing, researching, or caring for children, Kathleen spends her time reading, visiting historical sites, hiking, and crafting.
 

 

More from Kathleen

 

As Valentine’s Day nears, stories of how couples met seem to be everywhere. Many of those stories share a common element: “The second I saw him/her, I just knew I would marry him/her.”
 
Every time I read or hear these stories, I chuckle. Not because I don’t believe them but because it reminds me of my own meet-cute.
 
“Not my type.”
 
These were the first words to enter my mind when I met the man who would later become my husband. In hindsight, they are hilarious because I know that God worked things out for our good. After more than eighteen years of marriage, I can honestly say that I am more in love with my husband than ever.
 
However, just a few months prior to meeting my husband, I’d suffered a terrible breakup with another man whom I thought had been considering proposing to me. I had no idea the breakup was coming and that left me devastated and confused. The truths we learn in hindsight don’t help much when we’re in the midst of such circumstances. When we think we know the future before us and something happens to upend those plans it can feel as though our world has turned upside down.
 
This is what happens to Eliza Brooks in the first chapter of my novel, Waltz in the Wilderness. Though not romantic in nature, a major shift occurs in her world that leaves her feeling betrayed and disoriented. She’s still struggling to right her world when Daniel Clarke enters her life in the worst way possible. Misunderstanding leads to a humiliating confrontation that sets these two at odds with one another before they have a chance to truly get to know each other. Fortunately for Eliza and Daniel, God works their foolishness for good just as He did in my own true love story.
 
This Valentine’s Day, whatever your romantic relationship status, remember that you are not alone. You are loved. And the God of all the universe loves you and has a plan for you—plans to prosper you and bring you hope. “
 
Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.” ~ Proverbs 3:5-6
 

My Review

 

A promising beginning to the Chaparral Hearts series by Kathleen Denly, “Waltz in the Wilderness” combines the best of westerns, adventure and survival stories, and of course romance. This is a story that I think is best enjoyed without reading the synopsis first, which is a practice I always employ to avoid knowing how the story might play out. As I read, I was so glad that I went in blind because the characters and the plot were surprising in ways that they would not have been otherwise.

Historically a fan of solely pioneer fiction, for the past several years or so I have branched out and have been exploring other genres, historical in particular, including Westerns. As soon as I saw the cover for “Waltz in the Wilderness”, coupled with the whimsical yet mysterious title, I knew that I had to request a copy to review. Like others that I have read in recent months, this book manages to inject the story with interesting detail and subplots; there is no lull in the action, but I also did not feel overwhelmed. This is such an important distinction to make, and it can make or break the book. With “Waltz in the Wilderness”, what drew me in the most were the characters.

Far from the fainting heroine waiting for her knight in shining armor, Eliza Brooks has grown accustomed to carrying her own and her pa’s burdens. When he goes missing, however, Eliza must rustle up every bit of her courage as she embarks upon her quest to find him. Although at times I shook my head at her naiveté, for the most part she demonstrates  extraordinary strength of character, tempered occasionally by gaffes that make her human.

Daniel Clarke, whose introduction to Eliza gets off on the wrong foot, is preparing to leave California to return to his family and fiancée in Boston. However, crossing paths with Eliza steers him off his course as the two decide to navigate the treacherous Southern California mountains. “She was, without a doubt, the most exasperating woman God had ever created.” It is their tenacity and resilient spirits that urge them on, deepening their faith and their own friendship, but will it be enough?

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

 

A Baker’s Perspective, February 5

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, February 5

Pause for Tales, February 5

Texas Book-aholic, February 6

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 6

Older & Smarter?, February 7

deb’s Book Review, February 7

Reflections From My Bookshelves, February 8

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 8

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 9

The Christian Fiction Girl, February 9

The Meanderings of a Bookworm, February 9

Betti Mace, February 10

Through the Fire Blogs, February 10

Inklings and notions, February 11

Robin’s Nest, February 11

Remembrancy, February 12

For Him and My Family, February 12

My Devotional Thoughts, February 12

Maureen’s Musings, February 13

For the Love of Literature, February 13

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 14

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 14

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 15

Blossoms and Blessings, February 15

Bigreadersite, February 15

Emily Yager, February 16

Blogging With Carol, February 16

Mia Reads, February 16

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impression, February 17

Janicesbookreviews, February 17

SPLASHES of Joy, February 18

Hallie Reads, February 18

Connie’s History Classroom, February 18

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, Kathleen is giving away the grand prize package of a NEW Kindle Fire HD8, Proverbs 3:5 Paperback Lined Journal, Romans 8:28 Leather Bookmark, Proverbs 3:5 mug, and an Antique Silverplated Spoon made by 1847 Rogers Bros!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
God Hears Her Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book


Book:  God Hears Her

Author: Our Daily Bread

Genre: Non-fiction / Christian / Devotional

Release Date: September, 2017

Tour Dates: February 1 – 14

When you’re having one of those days, you just want to know that someone is on your side. You have more than just someone  . . . you have your Heavenly Father! He is with you. He is for you. He hears your heart’s cry. And He will reassure you of this through the beautifully designed, hardcover devotional collection, God Hears Her. The personal stories, Scripture passages, and inspirational quotes pulled from Our Daily Bread devotionals will lift you up and remind you that God is bigger than the trials you face.


Click HERE to get your copy!  
 

About the Author

 

Our Daily Bread Publishing - Our Daily Bread Publishing is a division of Our Daily Bread Ministries. Founded in 1938, the ministry has grown from a small group of dedicated radio listeners to millions of people around the world who use our Bible-based resources, including the beloved Our Daily Bread devotional. Our Daily Bread Ministries is a non-denominational, non-profit organization with staff and volunteers in over 37 offices working together to distribute more than 60 million resources in 150 countries. Regardless of whether it’s a radio or television broadcast, DVD, podcast, book, mobile app, or website, we provide materials to help people grow in their relationship with God.  

More from Our Daily Bread

 

‘Feels Like Home’ Winter Recipes
 
As the weather turns colder, it becomes the time to pull out those tried and true winter-time recipes. You know, the ones that make us (or even keep us) warm on the inside. This is the time for the food that just feels like home.
 
Kirsten Holmberg and Elisa Morgan from the God Hears Her blog have shared some of their families personal recipes. These are the ones that are good for everyone. Feel free to try them yourself, bookmark them for later, or share them with a friend.
 
Kirsten Holmberg
 
In the winter, I’m partial to any slow-cooker soup or stew because I love coming home to it in the evening. My favorite is a Vegetarian Chili with some Italian influences:
2 bell peppers, diced
2 stalks of celery, sliced
2 lb zucchini halved and sliced
1 lb fresh mushrooms, halved
1 large onion, diced
3 cans diced tomatoes (fire roasted or herbed for the most flavor)
1 can tomato sauce
1 small can black olives, sliced (or fresh in any amount desired)
1 can cannellini beans
2.5 teaspoon Italian seasoning
2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon black pepper
1 teaspoon fresh garlic, minced
½ cup water
Toss it all in a slow cooker for a few hours on high, or all day on low. Or, put it on the stove instead and simmer until the veggies are cooked through and the flavors blended (about 45 minutes). Parmesan cheese on top for an extra zing.
 
Elisa Morgan
 
A Cranberry Nut Bread recipe handed down by my mom, Paige Lee
2 cup flour
½ tsp salt
1 ¼ tsp baking powder
½ scant tsp baking soda
1 cup sugar
Sift above ingredients together twice. To the juice and grated rind of 1 large orange, add 2 tbs of melted shortening and enough boiling water to make ¾ cup. Mix with dry ingredients and add…
1 beaten egg
1 cup chopped pecans
1 cup halved fresh cranberries
Bake in greased loaf pan for 75 minutes at 350 degrees.
If you double the recipe, bake a little less time and use 3 loaf pans. It also makes good muffins and can be frozen. 
 

My Review


Compiled by Our Daily Bread, “God Hears Her” is an affirming devotional collection by women, for women. Among the plethora of devotionals to choose from, what sets this collection apart is not only the exclusively female authorship, but also the focus on women’s needs. This could be read by other groups, but will speak most to a woman’s heart. Because of its compact size, “God Hears Her” will fit into a handbag or purse, and although unpaginated, the readings are dated by month and day. This worked well for me because I am using a hardback copy, but if an e-reader wants to jump to a certain day or selection, I can foresee this being a problem. I personally would have appreciated a table of contents with the title of each day, simply for ease of use and for concentrating on a particular topic after completing the year of readings.

Each day’s reading is one small page in length, with the Bible verses pertaining to the devotional story listed and the main verse written out. With a short paragraph or two each dedicated to the author’s story and the Biblical tie-in, these can be read in a minute or two. This brevity is advantageous for the busy woman, and I appreciate that about it, but at the same time I feel somewhat unfulfilled. For newer Christians or those unfamiliar with the Bible, this is probably not the best devotional to start your study with, but if you are looking to mix up your routine and want to choose something that is quick and pertinent to women today, give “God Hears Her” a try.

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

 

The Avid Reader, February 1

deb’s Book Review, February 1

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, February 2

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 2

Texas Book-aholic, February 3

Mary Hake, February 3

God is Love, February 4

Emily Yager, February 4

Genesis 5020, February 5

A Diva’s Heart, February 5

Girls in White Dresses, February 5

Lighthouse Academy, February 6

amandainpa, February 6

For Him and My Family, February 7

For The Love of Books, February 7

Inklings and notions, February 8

Andrea Christenson, February 8

Blossoms and Blessings, February 9

CarpeDiem, February 9

Older & Smarter?, February 10

She Lives to Read, February 10

For the Love of Literature, February 11

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 12

Godly Book Reviews, February 12

Artistic Nobody, February 13

Back Porch Reads, February 13

Little Homeschool on the Prairie, February 14

Kat’s Corner Books, February 14

 

Giveaway

 

 

To celebrate their tour, Our Daily Bread is giving away the grand prize package of  a God Hears Her hardcover, God Hears Her leather-like, God Hears Her journal, God Hears Her CD, God Hears Her pen, and God Hears Her Scripture & Encouragement cards!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
Hannah's Courage Book Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  Hannah’s Courage

Author: Molly Jebber

Genre:  Amish Historical Romance

Release Date: January 28, 2020

A loaf of fragrant cinnamon bread for breakfast . . . a sweet and creamy custard pie for dessert. In 1912 Ohio, the Amish Charm Bakery has something to delight locals and visiting Englischer alike. And within this warm, welcoming community, there’s always room for love to grow . . .

Hannah Lapp’s life, like a long-cherished recipe, is satisfying just the way it is. She enjoys whipping up desserts at the bakery, tutoring local children, and socializing with dear friends. One of those friends, Timothy Barkman, has made his interest in Hannah clear, but she’s been in no hurry to change her circumstances.

No sooner does she feel ready to grow closer to hard-working, handsome Timothy than Hannah finds she may have waited too long. Charlene Shetler intends to become Timothy’s fraa. It’s little wonder he’s attracted to such a pretty, forthright young woman, but is the newcomer all that she seems? Only when Hannah is willing to confront some difficult truths can she move bravely toward a life of abiding faith and love . . .


Click HERE to get your copy!

About the Author

 


Molly Jebber’s Amish Historical Romance books have been featured on Publisher’s Weekly’s Best Ten Recommended Reads, in USA Today’s HEA, Romantic Times and many other media sites. She’s tours and speaks for Stonecroft Ministries – Women’s Christian Connection, and about Amish history/traditions, writing, marketing, publishing, and her books. She loves God, her family, and friends. She enjoys swimming, golf, reading, and says yes to butterscotch pie and parasailing, but no to coconut and skydiving! Visit http://www.mollyjebber.com for a complete list of her books and speaking events.

More from Molly

 

I related to Hannah in this book where I had to find the courage to make some hard decisions. Maybe you’ve had some hard choices to make and finding the courage to follow through has been difficult for you.
 
Have you had a bad day where nothing goes right? We’ve all had those. Hannah’s has many days like this, and she is torn about what to do from one problem to the next in her life. She makes some snap decisions, and faces life-altering challenges. You’ll laugh and want to stomp your feet at the twists and turns in this story.  She’s good at giving her friends advice, but has trouble following it. I can relate to this in my life at times. Maybe you can too.
 
The Sheriff and Dr. Harrison are still regular customers at the bakery where she whips up mouth-watering desserts. She and her friends cry, laugh, and offer each other advice. I love time with girlfriends, and Hannah’s no different. You’ll relate to her, root for her, want to reach in the book and shake her at times (I’m sure my friends have wanted to do this with me a time or two!), and wonder how what the future holds for her.
 
I hope you’ll follow my blog tour and enter for a chance to win the Grand Prize at the end of the tour. The more you enter, the more chances you have of winning! Thank you so much for your support and encouragement. Your Facebook comments help me to get to know you better, and I appreciate it so much! Here’s a recipe Hannah’s whipped up for you. And there are more in the back of Hannah’s story.
 
Cake
  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¾ teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 ¾ teaspoons cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ¼ cups vegetable oil
  • 1 ¼ cups granulated sugar
  • ½ cup brown sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
  • 3 large apples, peeled and cut into large pieced

Glaze

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons heavy cream
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Grease 9 x 13 pan with butter and coat with 2 tablespoons of flour
  2. In a large bowl, sift together flour, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Sift two additional times and set aside.
  3. In the bowl of a stand mixer, combine oil and both sugars, and mix until well blended.
  4. Add eggs one at a time, mixing thoroughly after each addition. Add vanilla and mix again.
  5. Add the sifted dry ingredients to the batter and mix thoroughly. By hand, fold in apples and walnuts and mix until evenly combined.
  6. Spoon the batter into the prepared bundt pan. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the center of the cake comes out clean.
  7. Remove cake from the oven and allow to cool in the bundt pan for 20 minutes.
  8. While the cake is cooling, prepare the glaze. In a saucepan, over medium heat, combine all of the glaze ingredients. Bring to a boil and allow the mixture to boil for 1 minute.
  9. Remove the cake from the pan, onto a serving plate. Spoon the glaze over the warm cake.
  10. Cool for a little longer before serving.


My Review

 

“With God, she believed all things were possible. She had motivation, and maybe it was time she exercised courage.”

Although in the past I have only rarely read Amish stories, in the past year or so they have become a regular addition to my reviewing schedule. The quaintness and slower pace are refreshing in comparison to modern daily life, as are the steadfast devotion to God and the fervent sense of community. At the same time, the ways in which Amish and Englisch lives are alike enhances the reading experience. With this book, in particular, the parallels stand out, and the characters seem very relatable, without the disconnect that sometimes occurs with this genre.

A mixture of sweetness and heartache, “Hannah’s Courage” is book 3 in Molly Jebber’s Amish Charm Bakery series. While it is not necessary to read the first two books in order to understand the story, take into consideration that there are spoilers for the major plotlines. Except for a few scenes that featured motor cars, the fact that this story is set in 1912 did not stay in the forefront of my mind; mostly because of the Amish lifestyle, there is a timelessness that seeps through the pages. The language also has a natural flow to it, and a brief dictionary is included for the Pennsylvania Dutch words that the characters speak. The setting of Charm, Ohio is one I’m familiar with because I have been to and shopped in the Berlin area numerous times over the years.

Endearing characters populate this novel, each with struggles and flaws like the rest of us. Admittedly, though, I did become frustrated with some of them, and the narrative seems as though it could be edited down to avoid drawn-out episodes and drama. The title character was my favorite because I identified with her dislike of change and I also applaud her for the selflessness she demonstrates continuously. Attempting to avoid making the same mistake twice, “She’d rise above her inhibition and nurture the courage she’d found within her” because “He didn’t promise life would be easy. He promised to never forsake her, and she claimed that promise.”

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

 

The Avid Reader, January 30

Genesis 5020, January 30

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 31

Texas Book-aholic, January 31

Batya’s Bits, February 1

Quiet Quilter, February 1

She Lives to Read, February 2

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 2

Bigreadersite , February 3

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 3

For Him and My Family, February 4

deb’s Book Review, February 4

Inklings and notions, February 5

Jeanette’s Thoughts, February 5

Pause for Tales, February 5

Older & Smarter?, February 6

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 6

Blossoms and Blessings, February 7

Lighthouse Academy Blog, February 7 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, February 8

Christian Bookaholic, February 8

For the Love of Literature, February 9

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 9

SusanLovesBooks, February 10

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, February 10

Connie’s History Classroom, February 11

SPLASHES of Joy , February 11

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 12

Vicky Sluiter, February 12

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, Molly is giving away a Molly Jebber grand prize collection that includes a handmade quilt and Amazon card!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Unwanted No More Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book


Book:  Unwanted No More

Author: BJ Garrett

Genre:  Memoir

Release Date: December 1, 2019

I can still feel the emptiness in my heart.

So many memories of ugly… As a preteen shattered by a sexually abusive father and an absent mother, B. J. Garrett is left unprotected, unloved, and unwanted by the people who should have loved her most. Instead, BJ finds herself wanted by the wrong people for the worst reasons.

Her search for self-worth leads to sexual promiscuity and unplanned pregnancies, which only further warps her view of love, leaving a trail of broken relationships. It’s not until losing everything to the blaze of a house fire that the course of BJ’s life takes a turn toward a God whose love is pure. With the shadow of shame lifted by her newfound faith, BJ makes a startling discovery—she’s been wanted all along, and her new love-filled life comes with a call to ministry.

Written with soul-searching vulnerability, this story shows that regardless of what you’ve done or what’s been done to you, there is hope and redemption in a relationship with Jesus. Unwanted No More reminds you that no matter how ugly your past, you can experience unconditional, beautiful love and a life of purpose.



Click HERE to get your copy.  

About the Author

 


B. J. Garrett serves as the executive director for Christ-Centered Abortion Recovery & Education. She holds an associate of divinity degree from Baptist Missionary Theological Seminary, and she has served in church ministries as a youth director, singles director, missions director, and women’s ministry team leader. She and her husband, Jay, live in Texas and enjoy spending time with their children and grandchildren.  

More from B.J.

 

All my life I have battled with feelings of being unwanted and unloved. Somewhere between the insanity of the Jerry Springer show and the emotional outcry of the Oprah show, the unbelievable redemption details of my life are unfolded onto the pages of this book. Spunky. silly, and sassy are the three words that best describe my personality. I believe the Lord gave me a love for hamburgers to make sure I never return to a life of selling my body to make ends meet. Spending time with my grand kids who are basically perfect is my favorite pastime. I love being Jay’s wife and serving beside him on the mission field. By God’s amazing grace, I have come full circle, receiving complete forgiveness and healing from a childhood full of abuse, teen pregnancy, sexual promiscuity, abortion, and working in the sex industry. If the Lord can use a story like mine, rest assured He will use a story like yours! If like me, you have ugly in your past, I want to encourage you that no matter what you have done, no matter what has been done to you, there is hope and healing through Jesus Christ.
 

Author Interview

 

When/how did you decide to become a writer?

 

I have a hard time even recognizing myself as a writer even now that I have a book published. I was a person who survived a difficult childhood, rescued and redeemed by an amazing Heavenly Father, and I simply want others to know that He is real, and that you truly can overcome hardships. It may be crazy hard, but if I can do it, anyone can!


What drew you to the time period that you write about?

 

So, I actually write about my full life, or what all of it I remember. For me and my personal journey to where I am today, and how I got here, required me to start from the beginning. If I would have started at the time when I met Jesus, the transformation would not have been so amazing. It also would not have reached my target audience of people who have experience pain and treauma in their lives. I wish I could have written an historical romance fiction story, but it was the true story of my own life I felt led to show my audience.


Who was/is your biggest inspiration?

 

Probably the women I get to work with. I have seen first hand how healing it is, just to have someone understand the pain you have experienced. To now that you are normal for feeling and possibly even acting out the way you have because of what has happened to you. To now have a book for anyone to be able to pick up and read and see that they are not alone, that no matter what was done to them or what they have done to themselves, there is hope and healing through Jesus Christ. That was and will always be my inspiration I think.


What is your work schedule like when you’re writing?

 

I have a full time ministry job, so it was actually quite intense. I would work all day, come home and try to write. Often until the wee hours of the morning. It was exhausting. Emotionally, spiritually and physically. But also, invigorating. To get a scene out of my heart and onto paper felt amazing.


Do you prefer traditional books, ebooks, or audiobooks?

 

Yes? I love audiobooks because I am very busy and on the road a lot. I can listen to audiobooks and while driving, flying etc. I love ebooks, because I can hold an entire library ion my fingertips at all times. But, there is nothing that compare to sitting on a comfy favorite spot, wrapped in a blanket, hot cocoa or a diet Dr. Pepper nearby with a real hold in your hands traditional book.


Blog Stops

 

Vicky Sluiter, February 7 (Author Interview)

Texas Book-aholic, February 8

For the Love of Literature, February 9 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 10

Through the Fire Blogs, February 11 (Author Interview)

A Reader’s Brain, February 12

A Baker’s Perspective , February 13 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, February 14

Inklings and notions, February 15

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 16 (Author Interview)

For Him and My Family, February 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 19

Book Love, February 20 (Guest Review from Gail)

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, B.J. is giving away the grand prize package of a signed copy of the book and 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
5 Stars
Divine Intentions Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book: Divine Intentions

Author: Doug K. Reed

Genre: RELIGION / Christian Living/Personal Growth

Release Date: January 7, 2020

Divine Intentions takes readers on a journey of self-discovery through four key concepts: rescued, restored, relabeled, and redirected. Most people, even Christ-followers, are wounded at their core, with soul-level injuries that affect their identity. They may be hurting from past circumstances or feel trapped in their current ones. Basic discipleship sends believers on a journey…but it’s tough to take those steps while you’re hurting. Doug K. Reed offers healing for those who are searching for answers to their identities in Christ while struggling with wounds from the past or present. He shares his own personal story of restoration from pornography, pride, and other issues, helping to lead readers into the light of God’s love.


Click HERE to get your copy. 
   

About the Author

 


Doug K. Reed is a full-time writer and speaker who travels to conferences and churches both in the U.S. and internationally. He is the president of Partnership International, a non-profit organization dedicated to completing meaningful projects in some of the world’s poorest environments. Partnership International has hosted thousands of people on short-term mission trips with a goal of sharing the love of God with the neediest among us. In his over thirty years of ministry experience, Doug has also served as a senior pastor and on staff at large churches.  

 

More from Doug

 

DESIGNED FOR A PURPOSE
 
Woodworking has been a hobby of mine since childhood. When my wife, Jeanne, and I were engaged, I created a wooden jewelry box for her that she still treasures and uses to this day, thirty years later. Every time she uses it, she’s reminded of how much I love her.
 
That jewelry box was designed with a specific purpose in mind. If, God forbid, I ever got mad at her, removed her jewelry, and put my fishing lures in there, the gift that once brought joy would now cause pain. And that jewelry box would make a lousy tackle box because it was not designed for that purpose. My creation would fail to fulfill my original intention.
 
In a similar way, we have been lovingly designed by God for a specific purpose. We can fill our life with lesser things, but He lovingly designed us to hold the treasure of destiny. He created us with the capacity to fulfill all He has planned for us.
 
Far too many books are written to advanced leaders without considering where the majority of people find themselves.  The goal of the book is to meet people where they are.  The book dives into their pain and to honestly and authentically address it.  My own story is the constant backdrop in the book which adds greatly to its relatability.  The combination of storytelling and deep content make this book unique. 
 

My Review

 

Writing with a direct and sympathetic tone, Doug Reed shares his insight into how readers can come to understand the life they’ve been given and how they can seek to glorify God in it. The most important thing, by far, to remember when contemplating our identities is that the Lord created us and planned our lifespan and every detail long before we were born. No matter how many mistakes we make, there is nothing that can separate us from God if we have accepted Jesus as our Lord. It is once we recognize our priceless identity in Him that we can move forward and become the godly Christian men and women whom God has called us to be—true light bearers. As Reed asserts, “We begin our new life of seeking God’s divine intentions for us by acknowledging that we are individually inadequate, desperate, and sinful, and recognizing that we don’t have the ability to save ourselves. In short, we admit our need for rescue.”

Divided into four main sections, “Divine Intentions” speaks to the brokenness in each of us by addressing how, through Christ, we are rescued, restored, relabeled, and redirected. Because of the redemptive work of the cross, we can rejoice that “Our God is a God of forgiveness and He also is a God of restoration.” Much of this book consists of the author’s personal accounts, which not only illustrate his points but also demonstrate practical application. Brief, summarizing quotations taken from the text itself appear on each page, and there are Discovery Questions at the end of each chapter, with spaces given for writing responses. As either a guide for personal study or for group use, “Divine Intentions” is a compassionate, versatile book with a focus on healing and restoration. 

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, January 31

Texas Book-aholic, February 1

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 2

Artistic Nobody, February 3 (Author Interview)

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, February 3

Inklings and notions, February 4

janicesbookreviews, February 5

Discipling4Life, February 6

For the Love of Literature, February 7

Andrea Christenson, February 8 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 9

For Him and My Family, February 10

Christian Bookshelf Reviews, February 11 (Author Interview)

CarpeDiem, February 12

Mary Hake, February 13

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate his tour, Doug is giving away the grand prize of a $20 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
5 Stars
The Creeper Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  The Creeper

Author: Teresa Posey Carey

Genre:  Christian Children’s Book

Release Date: December 5, 2019

Even The Creeper loses things from time to time. How will he recover what he seeks? Find out in rhyme!

What begins as a determined search for something important becomes a treasure hunt full of clues and a valuable lesson in searching for that which is lost.

Delightful illustrations and endearing rhymes tell a story that teaches subtle lessons in perseverance and diligence.



Click HERE to get your copy.  
 

About the Author

 


Children’s author Teresa Posey Carey took her inspiration from Dr. Seuss’ rhyming stories. A born again Christian, she hopes to honor God in all she does, including her favorite things: spending time with family and friends and writing. Also an animal advocate, she loves her fur babies—-Sugar and Missy (dogs), Dinky and Skittles (cats)—-and dotes shamelessly on them. Teresa also has several new childrens books with bug characters and hopes everyone will visit her new Bug Huggers Facebook page! Teresa lives in De Kalb, Texas, the hometown of Dan Blocker, a.k.a. Hoss Cartwright, in the far northeast corner of the Lone Star State.  

More from Teresa

 

My new children’s rhyming book The Creeper is filled with mystery and fun. Treasures with clues are strewn along it’s pages to keep children guessing up until the very end, making it a very exciting and interactive book that kids will want to hear again and again. I wrote The Creeper because of my love for rhyming verse stories and God’s word, pairing the two, The Creeper becomes a great tool for teaching children about God’s love for them as well as instilling christian values and it introduces them to essential skills known to be learned from rhyming words together and what kid doesn’t love rhyme? The Creeper is based upon the Biblical principal of Matthew 7:7-8 If ye seek ye shall surely find what ye are looking for, this is what the foundation for The Creeper is all about! I first knew that i really loved and wanted to write verse stories after taking my daughter to the local library when she was a little girl, that’s when and where we discovered Dr. Suess, One fish two fish red fish blue fish, we were both hooked and enjoyed reading all the rest of his wonderful rhyming stories, along with all the Mother goose poems and anything else we could get our hands on! I believe that God gave this gift in my life to use for glorifying him while entertaining children. What better way to do things than to use your God given gifts and talents and give back unto The Lord!
 

My Review

 

What a charming children’s book! It reminds me of the type of picture books I enjoyed as a little kid and that so often seem to be absent today. I love that the action takes place outdoors in the country, introducing youngsters to natural landmarks such as brooks, thickets, and lagoons. I reread the story several times, and each time I came across something that I had not noticed before. Initially I was expecting this to be a bit of a spooky story based on the title and cover, but after reading it I realized that, while it is sweet and not scary, it does contain a mystery. More than one, in fact, because not only do we not know who the creeper is, but we also don’t know what exactly he is looking for. The author reveals clues little by little throughout the story, giving kids a reason to engage with the book and enjoy it more than once. Depending on the age of the child, parents may need to read this story aloud. The endearing rhyming nature of “The Creeper” lends itself to reading out loud, as well, and basing the story on Matthew 7:7-8 provides a Christian perspective on issues we encounter daily, such as not being able to find something yet continuing to be persistent and grateful. Lastly, I will say that the illustrations are gorgeous and one of my favorite aspects of “The Creeper”! They are in full color and truly make the story leap off of the page and into your heart.

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

 

janicesbookreviews, January 31

For Him and My Family, February 1

Inklings and notions, February 2

Book of Ruth Ann, February 3

Mary Hake, February 3

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, February 4

Texas Book-aholic, February 5

For the Love of Literature, February 6

Emily Yager, February 7

deb’s Book Review, February 8

Just the Write Escape, February 9

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, February 10

Remembrancy, February 11

Blogging With Carol, February 12

Danielle Lozada, February 13

 

Giveaway

 

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

 

Review
5 Stars
The Portrait of a Christian Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book:  The Portrait of A Christian

Author: Raymond Sopp

Genre: Non-fiction, Theology

Release Date: November, 2019

The apostle Paul, with great knowledge of Scripture, said in Philippians 3:7–8: “But whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish in order that I may gain Christ.” (NASB)

It takes a courageous person to take a second look—to lay down their life—just as the apostle Paul. Are you willing to take a second look, to lay down your life? The Portrait of a Christian was written to help you do so.

For more than thirty-eight years, Minister Raymond D. Sopp studied the Scriptures, not to parrot God’s Word through memorization but just to know God’s heart as He communicated through His Word. To know anyone’s heart, you must listen to their words.

Raymond wrote The Portrait of a Christian to challenge and provoke thought to those who desire a closer relationship with Christ. He wanted to paint a portrait of God’s heart through thirty-one separate commentaries—starting with the importance God placed on His Gospel and ending with a Lost Love. All of us must earnestly contend for the faith!


Click HERE to get your copy.  

About the Author

 


Minister Raymond D. Sopp has been a born-again Christian for more than thirty-eight years and ordained for more than eighteen years. He is not affiliated with any organization, nor a denomination. This has given him a unique opportunity to view the entire realm of Christianity from an objective point of view. His heart broke when he saw so many inconsistencies within the Church at-large. He inherently knew in his heart that the best way to point out error is to expose the truth in a way to provoke thought and challenge the Christian reader, while at the same time reach out to the nonbelieiver.
 
Concerned by the teachings that he heard, or better yet, what he did not hear, he started a ministry on May 1, 1996 solely focused on reaching the world. (Sopp Ministries became a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization on January 1, 1999.) The only purpose this ministry has is salvation both within and outside the Church at-large. Being somewhat overwhelmed, he knew he needed to stay focused on delivering a narrow message—a message that will cause all to examine themselves (2 Corinthians 13:5) to see if they’re literally born-again—to a true and biblical salvation—a simple message that has both temporal and eternal implications.
 

More from Raymond

 

Do you believe we’re approaching the Last Days? Are you seeing the season change—beginning to see leaves fall to the ground? Yes! Then, The Portrait of a Christian, is a must read for you.
 
There are several warnings given to the professing Christian in God’s Word; to me, the most terrifying warning to the professing Christian for this time we’re living in is what Jesus said in Matthew 7:15–23: “‘Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes, nor figs from thistles, are they? Even so, every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits. Not everyone who says to Me Lord, Lord will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven.’ Many will say to Me on that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’” (NASB)
 
The book I wrote, The Portrait of a Christian, is to help the professing Christian not to be one of those who just say “Lord, Lord.” Are you willing to take a second look at your Christianity? If so, then The Portrait of a Christian was written for you.
 

My Review

 

2020 seems to be a year for unique books, at least in the Christian market. Minister Raymond Sopp’s “The Portrait of a Christian” is one of them, and even though it is a second edition published again in August, I am counting it as this year’s. The cover on my paperback copy is the first thing that drew me in, with a beautiful lantern in the forefront and smoke behind; the first thought that crossed my mind was how God appeared to the Israelites as a cloud after delivering them out of Egypt. Even though most of this book focuses on the New Testament, particularly the apostle Paul and the book of Romans, there is plenty of material on other sections as well.

Expository but not dull, “The Portrait of a Christian” provides thirty-one detailed commentaries on laying down one’s life for the One who laid down His for us, Jesus. Each commentary can easily stand alone and is useful for individual or group study, opening with Scripture and proceeding into a discussion of a Bible story topic. These commentaries are unexpectedly engaging, and I found myself engrossed and reading more than I thought I had each time I picked it up. Sopp relies heavily on Bible verses in order to discuss the meaning of the text and demonstrates skill in incorporating verses from multiple Bible books. The very first chapter struck me; in it, Sopp offers some perspective on why Jesus told the recipients of His miracles not to tell anyone about them: the people were focusing on the restoration to health itself rather than Jesus, their salvation! A few chapters later, Sopp appeals to us not to be spiritually blind because “We zealously pray for health, wealth, and prosperity, but at the same time scarcely mention in our prayers a desire for the weightier provisions of faithfulness, mercy, forgiveness, and a heart like unto our Lord and God which is the heart of a servant.” Throughout the book, each message is like a personal call to draw closer to the Light of the World. In so doing, we not only light our own flames, but pass the torch to others along the way.

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, January 27

Texas Book-aholic, January 28

Inklings and notions, January 29

Artistic Nobody, January 30 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 31

deb’s Book Review, February 1

janicesbookreviews, February 2

Discipling4Life, February 3

Blossoms and Blessings, February 4 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, February 4

For the Love of Literature, February 5

For Him and My Family, February 6

Through the Fire Blogs, February 7 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 8

Godly Book Reviews, February 9

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate his tour, Raymond 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.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
Promised Land Review
 

About the Book

 


Book:  Promised Land

Author: Robert Whitlow

Genre: Christian Fiction, Suspense, Legal Drama

Release Date: January 14, 2020

With historical mysteries, religious intrigue, and political danger, Promised Land asks one momentous question: what if your calling puts you—and your family—in the crosshairs?
 
Despite their Israeli citizenship, Hana and Daud cannot safely return to their homeland because a dangerous terrorist ring is threatening Daud. Hana is perfectly fine remaining in the United States, working for a law firm in Atlanta, especially when she learns she’s pregnant. But Daud can’t shake the draw to return home to Israel, even if it makes him a walking target.
 
Hana is helping her boss plan a huge Middle East summit in Atlanta when Jakob Brodsky, her old friend and former co-litigator, asks for her help with a current case. His client is attempting to recover ancient artifacts stolen from his Jewish great-grandfather by a Soviet colonel at the end of World War II. Because the case crosses several national borders, he knows he needs Hana’s knowledge and skill to get to the bottom of what happened to these precious artifacts.
 
Meanwhile, Daud is called in to help a US intelligence agency extract a Ukrainian doctor from a dangerous situation in Egypt. While overseas, he can’t resist the call of Jerusalem and thus sets off a series of events that puts thousands of people in danger, including his wife and unborn child.
 
Bestselling author Robert Whitlow explores the meaning of family and home—and how faith forms the identity of both—in this breathtaking follow-up to Chosen People.



Click HERE to get your copy.  
 

About the Author

 


Robert Whitlow is the bestselling author of legal novels set in the South and winner of the Christy Award for Contemporary Fiction. He received his JD with honors from the University of Georgia School of Law where he served on the staff of the Georgia Law Review. Website: www.robertwhitlow.com; Twitter: @whitlowwriter; Facebook: robertwhitlowbooks
 

Read an Excerpt

 

Click Excerpt Link to read an excerpt of the book.
 

My Review

 

Over a decade ago, I read Robert Whitlow’s “Jimmy”, and while I don’t remember many details, I do know that I was captivated with the eponymous boy’s tragic story. I had vague intentions of reading more of this author’s books in the future, but I never ended up doing so until now. Despite not having much interest in legal fiction or politics, I decided that it was time to finally crack open another Whitlow novel. Granted, I realized after I began reading that this was the sequel to “Chosen People”, but for the most part I did not have much difficulty figuring things out along the way. I would recommend starting with book one, however, because it does set up the backstory and tension of this sequel.

“Promised Land” showcases the complex storyline that Whitlow has made his own. History, religion, and politics converge in this action-packed, educational follow-up. This story is lengthy, yet because of the pace it reads quickly. The outsiders-looking-in characters who populate this novel add another dimension, as do the languages spoken (not written). As someone with little to no knowledge of politics, I didn’t know whether I would actually enjoy this novel or not, but happily I did. There were sections that confused me, including the very beginning, simply because I am unfamiliar with Middle Eastern terms and customs. The number of characters is somewhat daunting, and I wish that their sections could have been more clearly divided, perhaps by putting their name at the beginning of the segment, as I found it difficult to keep them distinct in my mind. Whitlow’s foreshadowing, however, is very well done. There were many times throughout the narrative that my senses picked up on a character or behavior that later turned out to be significant. My favorite part of the book, however, is the faith element. Hana in particular remains firm and steadfast in the midst of upheaval and finding her life once again turned upside down. Uncle Anwar tells her, “Some promises come only through pain and sacrifice. And so it will be for you. There is a promised land without and a land of promises within. Both realms are yours to possess if you pass the tests.”

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

Genesis 5020, January 27

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 27

Inklings and notions, January 28

deb’s Book Review, January 28

Texas Book-aholic, January 29

For Him and My Family, January 30

CarpeDiem, January 30

Christian bookaholic, January 31

Mary Hake, January 31

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, February 1

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 2

Blogging With Carol, February 2

Daysong Reflections, February 3

A Good Book and Cup of Tea, February 3

For the Love of Literature, February 4

Betti Mace, February 5

Hallie Reads, February 5

By The Book, February 6

SPLASHES of Joy, February 7

Bigreadersite, February 7

Pause for Tales, February 8

Emily Yager, February 8

Locks, Hooks and Books, February 9

 

Review
5 Stars
New Release: Daughter of Rome by Tessa Afshar

 

Synopsis:

A woman with a devastating secret. A man bent on proving his worth. A chance encounter that catapults them into the heart of history.

When the daughter of a prominent Roman general meets a disinherited Jewish immigrant, neither one can dream of God’s plan to transform them into the most influential couple of the early church. Nor can they anticipate the mountains that will threaten to bury them. Their courtship unwittingly shadowed by murder and betrayal, Priscilla and Aquila slowly work to build a community of believers, while their lives grow increasingly complicated thanks to a shaggy dog, a mysterious runaway, and a ruthless foe desperate for love. But when they’re banished from their home by a capricious emperor, they must join forces with an unusual rabbi named Paul and fight to turn treachery into redemption.

With impeccable research and vivid detail, Daughter of Rome is both an emotive love story and an immersive journey through first-century Rome and Corinth, reminding readers once again why Debbie Macomber has said that “no one brings the Bible to life like Tessa Afshar.”

 

Book Purchase Links

 

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Christianbook

 

 

Author Bio:

 

Tessa Afshar is an award-winning author of biblical and historical fiction. Her books have won the Christy and INSPY Awards and been voted by the Library Journal as one of top five Christian fiction titles of the year. Her first Bible Study and DVD, The Way Home, based on the book of Ruth, will be released from Moody Publishers in June 2020. Born in the Middle East, Tessa moved to England in her teens where she attended boarding school for girls before moving to the United States permanently. Her conversion to Christianity in her twenties changed the course of her life forever. Tessa holds a Master of Divinity from Yale University, where she served as co-chair of the Evangelical Fellowship for one year. She worked in women and prayer ministries for twenty years before becoming a full-time writer and speaker.

 

Author Social Media Links:

 

www.tessaafshar.com

Facebook

Twitter

 

My Review:

 

Have you ever wondered what day-to-day life was like for the early Christian church? What it truly meant to become a follower of The Way in the initial years after Jesus’ resurrection? This is where Biblical fiction, when done well, can seek to take readers into the ancient world alongside the historical figures of old with their customs and etiquette, thereby facilitating a greater understanding of Scripture. Granted, this is no easy task, and although Biblical fiction is one of my favorite genres, there are only a few authors whose work I trust to remain true to God’s Word without adding to or taking away from it. One of these authors is Tessa Afshar.

 



Afshar’s latest work, “Daughter of Rome,” explores the lives of Aquila and Priscilla, the enigmatic New Testament couple whom the apostle Paul described as “my fellow workers in Christ Jesus” (Romans 16:3). The Bible mentions them six times, and their faith and influence are apparent, but their backstory and the details of their lives are not given. Implementing historical research and drawing from established facts about this period in time, Afshar ignites renewed interest in this husband and wife gospel team by creating a narrative that imagines what their individual lives may have been like before transitioning into their romance and eventual ministry. The beauty of this lies in demonstrating that they are real people with real flaws; as is evidenced over and over again in the Bible, God chooses to work through people who are broken and imperfect.

 



Priscilla and Aquila’s story diverges somewhat from Afshar’s usual style, effecting a deeper and more somber tone that makes the narrative all the more poignant. Gritty, realistic circumstances impress upon readers the harshness of life in ancient Rome. There is abortion, murder, persecution, and betrayal, but all are handled with grace and sensitivity. And as Rufus tells Priscilla, “It is hard to put to words. Trouble itself can be transformed, you see, in the hands of God. Instead of a place of destruction, pain and heartache can lead to hope.” As Priscilla grows in her faith, Aquila learns spiritual maturity. Far too often we, like Aquila, judge others for being what we consider to be inferior; the marriage of Roman Priscilla and Jewish Aquila truly speaks to the unity and unconditional love that Christ brings. As we struggle with our own burdens, we forget that those around us carry encumbrances of their own. Priscilla later testifies: “I can tell you that my own dreams have been crushed more than once. But when I condemned myself, God extended forgiveness to me. When I felt broken, he gave me strength. When I thought the future held nothing but pain, he gave me joy. Those are the actions of love.”  

 



“Daughter of Rome” does not shy away from the vicissitudes of life, particularly Christian life, and as such it offers encouragement and inspiration. It is a story of second chances, a poignant and at times heartrending narrative, made all the more so because every reader can identify with it in some way. “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus” (Romans 3:23-24). As Aquila wisely counsels, “The only way to peace is by learning to accept, day by day, the circumstances and tests permitted by God. By the repeated laying down of our own will, and the accepting of his as it is presented in the things which happen to us.” The apostle Paul demonstrates this throughout Scripture, and his role in this novel was one of my favorites because of his witty humor. He has a remarkable attitude toward suffering, but there is also evidence of his humanity, again emphasizing that God can use anyone for His glory. The fervor of the early church is something that, in many ways, I think we need to return to; our faith is dynamic, not static, and we should never lose our joy and awe at the priceless gift of salvation offered to each of us. With Christ as our cornerstone, we can become His instruments of love and peace. Priscilla “had been born a daughter of Rome. But she had become a daughter of the Most High God.” Whose child are you?

I received a complimentary copy of this book to facilitate this review. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, part 255 Guidelines, concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in advertising.

 

Book Launch Celebration

 

  

Join us on our author pages on February 4, 2020 from 7-9 p.m. for a special Facebook Live Book Celebration--a chance to ask us questions; win chocolates, gift cards and other giveaways; and short presentations by Tessa and Heidi. Can't wait to see you there!


Tessa's Author Page:
https://www.facebook.com/AuthorTessaAfshar/


Heidi's Author Page:
https://www.facebook.com/HeidiChiavaroli.Author/

 

Climbing Into Eternity Author Interview and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book: Climbing into Eternity: My Descent In Hell and Flight To Heaven

Author: Michele Pulford

Genre: Non-Fiction

Release Date: April 2018

“I died twice and came back to tell about it.”

Michele flirted with death for six years, trying to numb her pain following a sexual pervert’s attack. Attempting to protect herself, she allowed hatred of men to control her, and used mind control to manipulate others. Suffering with acute anorexia nervosa, she was pronounced dead on arrival at the hospital at age twenty-three.

She woke up in hell, a place of eternal damnation, horror, torment, and fire. Rescued by the Savior whose soft, gentle voice she had rejected, Michele was given a new chance at life and turned wholeheartedly to the Lord.

When her body was completely paralyzed from an anaphylactic allergy attack as a young mother, she found life leaving her body once again. “This time,” she says, “I was ushered into the splendorous glory of Heaven—a place of almost indescribable light and love.”

Sent back to tell her story, Michele Pulford warns others of the horrors of the kingdom of darkness, and tells them of the glory of true abundant life in God’s kingdom of light.

This personal love story, as well as a story about death and eternal life, is both a warning and a promise, and ultimately an unforgettable account of the love of God that would not let a young woman go.


Click HERE to get your copy.    

About the Author

 


Michele Pulford trained and worked as a fashion designer and textile lecturer from 1982 to 2009. After attending evening Bible school, she was further trained at MES Aksie, an evangelical missions ministry, before doing missionary outreach and relationship building among the locals in the Maghadighadi Pans of Botswana from 1990 to 1996. A marketplace intercessor and teacher on prayer, she makes her home with her husband Charles in South Africa. Their family consists of a son Cyle-jay, his wife Natasha, and grandson, Asher Ethan; and a daughter Brontii-ann.
 

More from Michele

 

After a sexual pervert’s attack at ten years of age, I invited evil into my life. I became an embittered, hateful teenager consumed by acute anorexia with murderous hate towards men. This led me into an abusive marriage of two years which ended with a failed murder attempt. Due to my failure I landed up DOA at my local hospital from premeditated suicide. On dying, I was taken to the evil and fiery demon invested accusing, tormenting pit of hell. It was here where the miraculous Light and Life of Jesus ripped through and rescued me.
 
I began my new life with my best friend, the Holy Spirit. Miraculously I married my high school sweetheart. The miraculous continued when after being declared completely barren, God’s love and grace stepped in resulting with me giving birth to a son and a daughter. Our family joy was shadowed by my soul-destroying bulimic addiction which God’s grace eventually set me free from. The life-death challenges did not end there. I found myself in an intense battle with witchdoctors as well with the dangers of onset anaphylactic attacks. It was one of these attacks that found me dying once again, with my husband and doctor watching. This time I was taken to the gates of heaven and glory. This is my story of life and death, heaven and hell, blessing and cursing.
 
 

Author Interview

 

When/how did you decide to become a writer?

 

It was at the age of twenty-five that I was given the prophetic word that I was to write a book when I turn forty years of age.

 

Do you have a favorite or special place to write?

 

My first priority to write is more about the space (the atmosphere) than place. The atmosphere I look for is one that carries the presence of God which will enable me to be able to ‘soar on the wings of an eagle’ as per say (from Isaiah 40:31).

 

What are your hobbies?

 

To research and grow in knowledge and understanding of true abundant life; and to study the Bible from all different angles possible.

To follow and watch F1 motor racing

To visit with and have tea dates with friends and family.

 

Do you prefer traditional books, ebooks, or audiobooks?

 

I enjoy the traditional books.

 

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

 

Definitely The Bible without a doubt.

 

 

Blog Stops

 

Texas Book-aholic, January 23

janicesbookreviews, January 24

Simple Harvest Reads, January 25 (Author Interview)

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, January 26

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 27

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, January 28

A Baker’s Perspective, January 29 (Author Interview)

Spoken from the Heart, January 30

Inklings and notions, January 31

My Devotional Thoughts, February 1 (Author Interview)

Artistic Nobody, February 2 (Guest Review from Kelsey Barela)

For Him and My Family, February 3

For the Love of Literature, February 4 (Author Interview)

deb’s Book Review, February 5

 

Giveaway

 
 
To celebrate her the grand prize of a $50 Amazon Gift Card and ‘signed’ copy of Climbing Into Eternity, My Descent In Hell and Flight To Heaven!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
Psalm Hymns Volume 5 Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book: Psalm Hymns, Volume Five, Psalms 107-150

Author: L.L. Larkins

Genre: Non-Fiction

Release Date: July 10, 2019

You’ve landed on the final book of Biblical Psalms in the Psalm Hymns series, Volume Five, Psalms 107-150 contains singable, recitable psalms in full form, adapted from the Biblical Psalms.

In this last volume of the Psalm Hymns series, you are offered a method for singing book V of the Biblical Psalms. Maybe your favorite psalm is included.

There are some sticky psalms, like Psalm 119- King David’s love poem to God’s law. You can ask yourself while singing it, why the law is important to a King. Psalm 137 is full of bile and bitterness, written by the remnant captives after the desolation of Jerusalem. But there are also the most lyrical and beautiful of praises for the eternal rule of God found in the Psalms of Ascent and in Psalm 107 and Psalm 136.

Psalm 139 is the lyrical ode and articulate description of God knitting our bodies together in secret, and how He watches over and cares for us no matter where we go.

The Celebration Psalms finish out the entire book of Psalms and Psalm Hymns series as a grand finale.


Click HERE for your copy!  

About the Author

 

 
L. L. Larkins graduated with a double major in Bible and Music from Colorado Christian University. Larkins is not a public speaker and in fact, enjoys being slightly incognito. This keeps the focus on the experience of singing the Psalms in each one’s own fashion or group.  It also keeps any hero-worship or dart-throwing contests about the author at bay.
 
The Psalms provide a different experience of praise and worship than what is currently experienced in western Christian music. Both are valuable.
 
Larkins wrote each of the Psalm Hymns books (a series) in the given biblical context of chapter and verse.  They are meant for teaching and experiential learning in Bible studies, as introductions to pastoral messages in the Psalms, for devotions during tours of the Holy Land, and for religious education for homeschoolers.  But, they are also meant for anyone who loves the Psalms and enjoys a good puzzle.  Some Psalms are so long that singing them can feel like chanting unless there is a creative musician in the group who knows about key changes, soloists, style changes, and other musical effects.
 
Larkins has wrestled with the puzzles of the psalms and has been thrilled with the spiritual enlightenment that adapting the Psalms to music has provided.
 

More from L. L. Larkins

 


Hi, and welcome to everyone wanting to go deep and wide, welcome to this singing book tour of the Psalms!
 
It’s my feeling that no other kind of Bible study can be quite as fun as a singing Bible study! You look at each other and can get a little anxious, but then someone starts singing the tune with the words of the Psalm and then everyone joins in or takes a turn. Nervous people start singing harmonies, then they get stronger.  People start laughing at themselves or at the wonder of the words they’ve never really heard before.  Afterward, people start commenting and asking questions. It’s just a blast!
 
The Psalms were written as prayers and soulful examinations about life, and as secret cover letters in times of war, and as testimonies about God’s miracles. But the Psalms were always meant to be sung rather than recited. Did you know? Singing excites the imagination and connects a variety of brain synapsis so that they create spiritual buzzes, new understanding, and alarms ring with new opportunities for faith and belief.
 
Our church uses the Psalm Hymns books as hymnals.  We sing a psalm before each message.
 
If you are going on a tour of the Holy Land or are an educator or lay leader or pastor, I hope that you contact my publisher, Capture Books, about getting some copies of the Psalm Hymns in bulk for groups.  I think there is special group pricing available.
 
Thanks so much for this opportunity to show off Biblical Literature adapted for today’s Church experience.
 

My Review

 

Music speaks to the soul. Usually it is easier to memorize the lyrics of a song than it is to try to recite a poem or other work of literature. The rhythm and notes connect with our ears and our emotions in a unique way, engaging us on a deep level. I think that this is part of why the psalms are among the most popular books of the Bible; the raw emotion and lyrical language are universal. Often I will make up my own words to hymns and praise songs, making them into an even more personal type of prayer.

Approaching the Psalm Hymns series, though, I wasn’t sure what to expect. I actually read Volumes 1 & 2 first and appreciated L.L. Larkins’ introductory note, which does not seem to be included in the later volumes, at least not in the eBook copy that I received. Progressing chronologically, “Psalm Hymns Volume Five, Psalms 107-150” contains a paraphrased rendition of Scripture written to coordinate with a Christian hymn. Each psalm lists the authorship and background as you would find it in the Bible, followed by the author of the tune to which it is set or the tune’s original name and date. Larkins kindly spaces the text to allow for musical notation should the reader be so inclined, and her variations on the wording of the psalms seems to align well with Scripture, based on the ones that I looked up at random. My favorites from this volume are Psalm 116, a hymn of exaltation set to “Joy to the World”; psalm 130, a psalm of ascents to be sung to “My Faith Looks Up to Thee”; and psalm 149, a song of joy and praise employing Beethoven’s “Joyful, Joyful We Adore Thee.”

There are quite a few hymns that I was not familiar with, which did make it difficult for me to fully appreciate and make the connection with some of the psalms. I am not sure if this is because I belong to the younger generation and much of the focus has been on contemporary worship songs, or if the hymns themselves are obscure. As the author notes, however, you can apply more than one song to these hymns. In some cases, the lyrics did seem to stretch the tune’s rhythm and timing too much, becoming a bit cumbersome and unwieldy. Overall, however, I very much enjoyed this collection and think that it is a unique but natural way to incorporate both the psalms and traditional hymns into our personal and communal worship experience.

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, L.L. is giving away the grand prize package of signed copies of the Psalm Hymns books (1-5)!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

New Release: Their Wander Canyon Wish by Allie Pleiter

 

Book: Their Wander Canyon Wish

 

Author: Allie Pleiter

 

Genre: Contemporary Christian Romance

 

Release Date: February 1, 2020

 

 

Can two little girls find their mom a match?

 

Their mother needs a fresh start…Could he be what they’ve been waiting for?

 

Back in her hometown with her twin daughters, widow Marilyn Sofitel is set on never falling in love again. She’s sure her heart is safe spending time with Wyatt Walker as he works to fix the carousel her girls love. Everyone knows he’s handsome, charming…and trouble. But as they grow closer, might their unlikely friendship to develop into something deeper?

 

 

Click HERE to get your copy.

 

 

About the Author:

 

An avid knitter, coffee junkie, and devoted chocoholic, Allie Pleiter writes both fiction and non-fiction. The enthusiastic but slightly untidy mother of two, Allie spends her days writing books, buying yarn, and finding new ways to avoid housework. Allie hails from Connecticut, moved to the midwest to attend Northwestern University, and currently lives outside Chicago, Illinois. The “dare from a friend” to begin writing has produced two parenting books, fourteen novels, and various national speaking engagements on faith, women’s issues, and writing.

 

Learn more about Allie and hire her to speak at your next event at https://www.alliepleiter.com/

 

Author Social Media Links:

 

Facebook

Twitter

Instagram

Review
5 Stars
Hidden Current Book Review and GIVEAWAY!
 

About the Book

 


Book: Hidden Current

Author: Sharon Hinck

Genre: Christian Fantasy

Release Date: January 14, 2020

The dancers of the Order direct their floating world of Meriel with their movements, but are they steering it toward destruction ?

Calara spent her life learning dance patterns and seeking to become the perfect servant to her people. When she discovers the work of the Order is built on lies, she flees with a rough-edged herder, Brantley of Windswell.   Pursued by soldiers of the Order, her journey through the suffering villages of the rim leads her to a forgotten truth that sends ripples through her world—and through her soul. 

Calara’s seeks clues to her forgotten family, discovers newfound courage in the face of danger, and awakens a growing but forbidden affection for Brantley. Yet even his support can’t fully be trusted, since he’d rather destroy the Order than bring reform. She is a lone woman facing opposition from rim villages and treachery from the all-powerful Order. Can she restore the dance to its true purpose and bring freedom and hope to her people?


Click HERE to get your copy!  

About the Author


Award-winning author of the ground-breaking Sword of Lyric series, Sharon Hinck is a wife, mom, and recent grandma, has an M.A. in communication, and has served as the artistic director of a Christian performing arts group, a church youth worker, and a professional choreographer, and an adjunct writing professor. To learn more about her writing, visit her at www.sharonhinck.com.
 

More from Sharon

 

Have you ever felt that nothing you do is ever enough? Not good enough? Meaningful enough? Do you ever think that if you could be more perfect, all your problems would be solved? In my new novel, I explore a character whose entire culture tells her that she must achieve perfection – and that answers to her world’s problems rest solely on human effort. Set in an imaginative fantasy world, I hope her journey will ring true for readers in our world.
 
I’m so excited to finally be able to share my new novel, Hidden Current, with readers. Can you see me Snoopy dancing?
 
And speaking of dancing …
 
What inspired this new series?  
 
Years before I wrote my first novel, I worked as a dance teacher, choreographer, and artistic director of a Christian dance company. So, when my agent and I were discussing ideas for my next book, he said, “In all your other novels, you’ve never drawn from your experience in dance. I’d love to see you create a brand-new fantasy world and utilize dance in some way.”
 
I began mulling the idea, and within days, a character had come to life.
 
In my new novel, Hidden Current, the dancers of the Order direct their floating world with their movements but are steering it toward destruction. One lone dancer fights to overcome opposition from rim villages and treachery from the all-powerful Order and bring a forgotten truth to her people.  
 
Is this part of a series?
 
Yes, but this is a stand-alone story. That means that although I’ve written more books with these characters, you don’t have to wait for the series to release, fearing an unresolved ending to book one. The story is complete of itself, with just a hint of the next adventure to follow. I’ve already done my revisions on the second book and have finished writing book three. J  
 
Why should I order soon?
 
This is being released in limited edition hardcover. That means when it’s gone, it’s gone.  
 
Is this similar to the Sword of Lyric books?
 
Yes and no. It’s not a “portal fantasy” – no modern-day character visits this world. However, like my other fantasy series, the book was inspired by spiritual themes, delves deeply into the heart of a character that many of us can relate to, and paints a unique story world full of both beauty and dangers. I’m so excited for its release!
 

My Review

 

Part dystopian, part fantasy, and wholeheartedly mesmerizing, Sharon Hinck’s “Hidden Current” begins The Dancing Realms series. The story unfolds with a steady rhythm that aligns with the pacing of the plot, an intricate dance that subtly yet powerfully carries the reader along. On a quest for truth and restoration after the shocking revelation that the Order is constructed on lies, Calara joins Brantley of Windswell and they set off. As she searches for her birth family away from the detainments of home, Calara goes up against the inevitable backlash, all to find that the stabilizing force they need has been present all along, waiting for them. This is a fine parallel of Christian life. Whereas ordinarily gifts and unexpected surprises come from friends and family, the Christian throws wide the floodgates to blessing when accepting Jesus as Lord and Savior.

Told in the first-person from Calara’s perspective, “Hidden Current” is rich in narrative and plot. Because of this direct connection to the story from the heroine, the reader is able to experience the tale as if participating in it. Calara observes that “When fear or doubt arouse, there was always the pattern. The pattern comforted. The pattern never changed.” This reflection leads ultimately to the Creator Himself, the only one who keeps the world spinning and who watches over us in every way, every day.

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

 

Inklings and notions, January 25

Texas Book-aholic, January 26

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, January 27

Artistic Nobody, January 28 (Author Interview)

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, January 28

Fiction Aficionado, January 29

janicesbookreviews, January 30

Emily Yager, January 31

For the Love of Literature, February 1

Wishful Endings, February 2 (Author Interview)

Mia Reads, February 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, February 3

Blogging With Carol, February 4

Tell Tale Book Reviews, February 5

Worthy2Read, February 6

Pause for Tales, February 7

 

Giveaway

 

 
To celebrate her tour, Sharon is giving away to two winners each the grand prize of a gift box full of goodies including: a Hidden Current book bag, a selection of other books by Sharon Hinck, Tsalla tea from Adagio (the tea they drink in the novel), chocolates, a packet of “star rain” (also from the book), an artistic book mark, and autographed book plate!!
 
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.
 

 

Review
4 Stars
Book Review of With You Here by Sarah Monzon

 

Blurb:

Holy Roman Empire, 1527
In the wake of Martin Luther’s religious reforms, Princess Christyne von Heidelbraum is compelled by her sense of duty to help ease the burden of her people. When she stumbles upon a dying man in the woods, she vows to aid him—even when she discovers the arrow shot in his leg was put there by a heretic hunter. With both her physical and spiritual well-being in danger, she must choose between conscience or adhering to the laws of the Empire.

Present Day
Doubting her calling to become a hospital chaplain, Amber Carrington takes time off from her theology studies to volunteer with refugees in Germany. Working with children, making a difference, reconnecting with the conviction that once drove her—these were her expectations. An instant attraction to a professional soccer player wasn’t a part of the plan…and she can’t let him distract her from her purpose.
As a new Christian, Seth Marshall is determined to put his popularity as a world-renowned footballer to good use. Unfortunately, old habits and public opinions are hard to overcome. When he falls hard and fast for Amber Carrington, his former life—and her no-dating policy—may block his perfect shot for the woman he loves.

 

Book Purchase Links: 

 

Amazon

 

 

Author Bio:

 

A Carol award finalist and Selah award winner, Sarah Monzon is a stay-at-home mom who makes up imaginary friends to have adult conversations with (otherwise known as writing novels). As a navy chaplain's wife, she resides wherever the military happens to station her family and enjoys exploring the beauty of the world around her.

 

Author Social Media Links:

 

www.facebook.com/sarahmonzonwrites

www.instagram.com/sarahmonzonwrites

www.twitter.com/monzonwrites

 

My Review:

 

A dual timeline story, Sarah Monzon’s “With You Here” is book four in the Carrington Family series. Not having read any of the previous books, I still had no trouble following along with this one. If I’m being honest, I am not a big fan of contemporary fiction, contemporary romance in particular, but because the second thread of the story is historical, I convinced myself to try it. While I did enjoy the historical aspect better, I was also charmed by the modern-day segments. I was intrigued by the calendar house, an architectural design previously unfamiliar to me. The sports angle didn’t garner my interest, simply because I’ve never been a sports fan of any kind, but I do appreciate the part that it plays in this book.

Indeed, the lives of athletic superstars are not all that they are made up to be. As Seth Marshall’s story reveals, it truly is harder for a rich person to enter the kingdom of heaven than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle (Matthew 19:24). A new Christian still learning about his faith and struggling to overcome the temptations of his old life, Seth feels tainted by his past. Amber Carrington, on the other hand, wrestles with thinking that she can’t help others as she feels called to do because her life has not been filled with hardship. Nevertheless, “[s]he’d come to volunteer. To serve.” Working with Syrian refugees in Germany brings the unlikely pair together, and as their faith increases, it also becomes challenging at times.

Nearly 500 years earlier, in the Holy Roman Empire, Princess Christyne von Heidelbraum faces her own trials. Her strictly law-driven father, a Catholic, vehemently opposes the Reformation, but Christyne risks her life to fulfill her vow to “improve their people’s lives”. Finding a severely wounded man in the woods, she remains true to her conscience and cares for him, even after discovering that he is “nothing more than a cursed Anabaptist.” Should her father or anyone else find out, her life will be forfeit.

Taking a stand for faith and acting according to moral integrity rather than social mores and peer pressure, both stories speak to the fact that persecution is ongoing but that nothing is impossible with God, and that He has a perfect plan for each of our lives.

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.