Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Book Review: All She Left Behind

From the Back:

"Once again, Jane Kirkpatrick creates a bold and inspiring woman out of the dust of history. Jennie's triumph, in the skilled hands of one of the West's most beloved writers, leaves its mark on your heart."--Sandra DallasNew York Times bestselling author

Already well-versed in the natural healing properties of herbs and oils, Jennie Pickett longs to become a doctor. But the Oregon frontier of the 1870s is an unforgiving place--especially for a single mother. To support herself and her young son, Jennie finds work caring for an older woman. When her patient dies, Jennie discovers that her heart has become entangled with the woman's widowed husband, a man many years her senior. Their unlikely romance may lead her to her ultimate goal--but the road forward is uncertain. 

My Reflections:
Stories with history and substance always delight my senses, this one was a real treasure!
Filled with drama and heart-tugging reality. "All she Left Behind," will move readers to re-evaluate their notions about the bonds of love and the journey to get there. 

I absolutely adore Jane Kirkpatrick's ability to research women of the past and embody their essence into the pages of her novels. Rich with texture and emotion this book will touch your heart and propel the pages forward with ease. 

This story was raw with emotion for me, having just lost a loved one to addiction, the storyline hit its mark with clarity. Addiction affects families everywhere, it's nothing new as we see with the plot in this novel, it is heartbreaking and tears families apart.  

Jennie is a single mother whose strength and determination are inspiring and uplifting. Her story starts out slowly but subtly builds into a well thought out and rounded plot.There were some unexpected twists and turns, and I truly enjoyed being part of Jennie's journey.

Kirkpatrick also delves into the aspects of divorce, a women's role in business and health care, all in the historically accurate time period of the 1800's! 
If you are looking for a moving story centering on faith, overcoming one's past, never giving up all the while living with grace and love, this story is for you!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc.
Jane Kirkpatrick
Jane Kirkpatrick is the New York Times and CBA bestselling author of more than 30 books, including A Light in the Wilderness, The Memory Weaver, This Road We Traveled, and A Sweetness to the Soul, which won the prestigious Wrangler...
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Saturday, 30 December 2017

Book Review: Lady Jayne Disappears

From The Back:

Lynhurst Manor is a house built on secrets . . . and the arrival of Aurelie Harcourt might reveal them all.When Aurelie Harcourt's father dies suddenly, he leaves her just two things: his famous pen name, Nathaniel Droll, and his wealthy family--who want very little to do with her.

As Aurelie struggles to find a home with her father's family and learn the rules of society, she relishes in his parting gift--the beginning of his last story. The story she always wanted to hear, about her mother's mysterious disappearance from the home where she now lives. To complete the novel, she'll have to extract clues from relatives--and one enigmatic houseguest--who often seem reluctant to give them up

My Reflections:
Joanna Politano pens an exquisitely intriguing novel with her "Lady Jane Disappears."
There are parallel storylines going with this plot, one from the past and one in the present. I'm simply blown away that this is this authors debut novel. The rich prose and splendidly intricate storyline kept me completely enthralled until 3 am, at which time I had to put the book down as I was literally falling asleep within the pages. It was that good!

Heroine Aurelie finds herself in a precarious position. Quietly she tries to uncover the story behind her mysterious mother and at the same time take up writing under her father's pen name, Nathaniel Droll. All this as she tries to integrate into her birth father's home after his untimely death in a debtor's prison.

Having grown up in the prison was all she had ever known. Aure tending to the emotional and physical needs of its inmates and assisting her father with his secret writing as famous Nathan Droll Aurelie has developed into a compassionate, intelligent young woman, although ill-prepared for life as a lady of class.

I loved how this book wove the stories together and intertwined past and present together in a heart-tugging emotionally charged plot. 

If you are looking for something different this holiday season, I would highly recommend this little gem! I am definitely adding this author to my go-to list!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc

Joanna Davidson Politano

Joanna Davidson Politano freelances for a small nonfiction publisher but spends much of her time spinning tales that capture the colorful, exquisite details in ordinary lives. Her manuscript for Lady Jayne Disappears was a finalist for several contests,...

Sunday, 24 December 2017

Book Review: Walk it Out

Women often pack their lives with family, friends, and faithful service, yet still end up feeling empty and unfulfilled. In Walk It Out, Tricia Goyer demonstrates to women that walking out the mandates of Scripture allows God to spark passion and mission within them.

Whether believers realize it or not, God intended for them to do what the Bible says: adop
move outside of what feels safe or secure. When women stop focusing on their own dreams and purposes, and instead focus on God’s dreams and purposes, everything changes

My Reflections:
Tricia Goyer challenges readers to walk away from the status quo, and live fully right where you are even if you are right dab in the mess and heartache, live fully today.
If you have heard this authors testimony, you will see she clearly is speaking from the heart. Her life is such a beacon of hope, grace, and perseverance! 

If you are a Christ follower living out God's word is what we do, yet just reading his word does not translate into "living" out his word. I want to be a God follower and have my life reflect that, even just a little. 
This book put feet on that principle. Let's walk it out people!

With Tricia's candor and humour, we learn how one person did just that, took her faith and trusted her God to make her dedication and love shine! 
True joy can be achieved when we follow God's still small voice, today I'm trusting that and living boldly. 

This is an incredibly uplifting read, you will most certainly feel the need to share it around with your friends!

I received this book from the author. Thank you so much for sharing your gift of knowledge through the journey God has placed you on Tricia Goyer!




Friday, 22 December 2017

Book Review: These Healing Hills

From The Back:

Francine Howard has her life all mapped out--until the man she loves announces his plans to bring home an English bride from war-torn Europe in 1945. Devastated, Francine seeks a fresh start in the Appalachian Mountains, training to be a nurse midwife for the Frontier Nursing Service.

Deeply affected by the horrors he witnessed at war, Ben Locke has never thought further ahead than making it home to Kentucky. His future shrouded in as much mist as his beloved mountains, he's at a loss when it comes to envisioning what's next for his life.

When Francine's and Ben's paths intersect, it's immediately clear that they are from different worlds and value different things. But love has a way of healing old wounds . . . and revealing tantalizing new possibilities.
My Reflections:
These Healing Hills is a delightful read, which captivated me within pages. The setting was rugged for the time period and made me feel slightly whimsical and right at home, nestled in the Appalachian mountains.

Francine Howard humiliated and broken from a severed relationship throws herself into her new career as a Midwife. Adjusting to the candid and beautifully straightforward people in her new hometown is certainly not easy, but Francine is a strong woman who must overcome her past. 

I so enjoyed that this directionally challenged lady so mirrored my experiences with getting lost, I so related on this level with her! This attribute caught the attention of Ben Locke and most of the townspeople. Francine is so endearing and slightly vulnerable leaving her the perfect maiden in distress. 

Ben Locke has just endured his time at war yearning for home, yet now that he is back he just can't seem to find his place, he desires more to life. Paths seem to always cross with a certain lost Francine, and a slow and sweet relationship ensues. I enjoyed the camaraderie and laughter these two shared, it was an endearing sort of romance.

I savored this meandering story, while it is long in length, and there is a whole slew of happenings, it is a book that you can soak in without having to think much.

Looking for a delightful romance filled with snowstorms, babies that need catching and even a dramatic shooting, look no farther. I'm hoping there is another Sequel by Ann Gabhart because I never wanted this story to end!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc

Ann H. Gabhart
Ann H. Gabhart is the bestselling author of several Shaker novels--The Outsider, The Believer, The Seeker, The Blessed, and The Gifted--as well as Angel Sister, Small Town Girl, Love Comes Home, Words Spoken True, and The Heart of...
Continue reading about Ann H. Gabhart

Tuesday, 19 December 2017

Book Review: The Proving

From The Back:

"Mandy, you are to inherit the farmhouse, including the business of the inn."

She could scarcely find her voice to respond. "
Ach, this must be a mistake," she told him, shaking her head as she talked into the phone, feeling befuddled. "The house . . . and everything related to the inn . . . shouldn't that go to Arie Mae?"
After five years as an Englisher, Amanda Dienner is shocked to learn her mother has passed away and left her Lancaster County's most popular Amish bed-and-breakfast. What's more, the inn will only truly be hers if Mandy can successfully run it for twelve months. Reluctantly, Mandy accepts the challenge, no matter that it means facing the family she left behind--or that the inn's clientele expect an Amish hostess! Can Mandy fulfill the terms of her inheritance? Or will this prove a dreadful mistake?
My Reflections:
The proving is exactly what you would expect from a Beverly Lewis novel. Well written, engaging and easy, light reading. The characters possessed depth and personality in only a style that Lewis is famous for. 

I saw a new element in this novel, Lewis used an Inn as the setting, something she has not done in the past, perhaps this is a new trend as I am seeing it more and more in Amish books and movies. It worked very well in this story, and it highlighted the interactions between Englishers and the Amish.  

This book starts backwards, our main character Amanda Dienner has left Amish Country but the story centers upon her return and the reintegration to the ways of the plain people.
Amanda (Mandy) receives a letter from her elder brother informing her of her mother Saloma's passing. She learns that Butterfly Meadows B and B has been left to her, but there are strict stipulations, can she really pull this off?

Some of the parts of this novel made me want to scream for the decisions being made, but knowing Beverly Lewis well I knew the Happily ever after was around the corner. I am a happily ever after kinda girl so I ignored my ire and plugged through those parts, enjoying the witty plot and dramatic themes interwoven with truth, and grace. 

If you are looking for a novel that takes you to a place where time slows down and life is anything but simple, this just might be the book for you!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc

Beverly Lewis
Beverly Lewis (www.beverlylewis.com), born in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch country, has more than 17 million books in print. Her stories have been published in twelve languages and have regularly appeared on numerous bestseller lists, including the New...
Continue reading about Beverly Lewis

Sunday, 10 December 2017

Book Review: Vanishing Point

From The Back:

Six girls missing . . . and every clue leads to a dead end
During Garrett Addison's first week on the job as a criminal investigator for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, his team is called out to a murder scene of a young girl. She's just one in a string of disappearances with one thing in common--a Polaroid photo of each victim left behind at the crime scene.

The FBI is pulled into the case to help, and Garrett finds himself working with Special Agent Jordan Lambert, the woman he once loved. When yet another girl dies, Garrett wonders whether he really has what it takes to be an agent. Maybe he should just walk. But while he may be done with the killer, the killer is not done with him--or Jordan.
My Review: If you don't get anything else for Christmas, get Lisa Harris's newest novel, Vanishing Point. I'm not usually a massive fan of plots that include kids getting murdered, I would instead leave reality to life. However, that being said this book was written with adrenaline pumping action that kept me up until it was concluded. I have a love-hate relationship with books like these. I love that they hang you out to dry, but I hate the next morning when I need to get out of bed and be a functioning adult!

A word of caution, if you have experienced trauma in your life around a child being abducted, and or murdered this book is not for you! Also if you are sensitive to this type of storyline, this book does contain graphic details and may be upsetting to some readers.

I loved the characters, they seemed real to life, and their vulnerability was palpable. One thing that irked me was the relationship between Garrett and Jordan, come on people admit you love each other still and get on with living! Enough said. If you like a good romantic suspense and you want to be sleep deprived of a night or two, absolutely pick this book up, you will be hooked on the first page.
Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc

Lisa Harris

Lisa Harris is a bestselling author, a Christy Award winner, and the winner of the Best Inspirational Suspense Novel for 2011 from Romantic Times. She has sold over thirty novels and novella collections. Along with her husband, she and her three...
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Wednesday, 29 November 2017

Book Review: Colors of Love An inspirational Coloring Book

About the book:

"Give thanks to the Lord, because he is good; his love is eternal."--1 Chronicles 16:34
Being creative is one of the ways we reflect the image of God. Colors of Love not only provides you with creative inspiration but also offers a fun and relaxing way to reduce stress and renew your strength. It's filled with beautiful pictures that celebrate God's unending love and inspiring Scripture verses on the theme of love. Color these any time you need encouragement and display them anywhere you need a reminder of the love of God.

My Reflections:
I was so excited to order this adult coloring book for review. I have done many in the past and been so thrilled with the beauty and intricacy of the coloring samples. 

Unfortunately, I was disappointed with the quality of this particular book.  The coloring pages are very basic and plain. The lines are bold, and there is no challenge to the pattern and design of the coloring pages. The pictures do not fit the pages, there is mostly a small picture with a lot of white space around it. Perhaps this is to journal, or just doodle? It just feels like it is geared for a much young audience. 

I did, however, enjoy that it included scripture, but unfortunately even those are very basic in nature, I was hoping for an "inspirational" type adult coloring book, but sadly this one did not meet my expectations.

If you are looking for a coloring book for your children, this may be an excellent fit. I don't usually give negative reviews, but I can't say I'm a fan of this one. 

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc

Lisa Joy Samson is an artist and the author of nearly forty books, including the inspirational coloring books Colors of Hope and Colors of Faith. She lives in Colorado.
Lisa Joy Samson
Lisa Joy Samson is the author of nearly forty books, including Colors of Hope and Quaker Summer, which was named novel of the year by both Women of Faith and Christianity Today. Her chief creative love has always been art, and she has...
Continue reading about Lisa Joy Samson
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