Thursday, March 30, 2017

Her Secret by Shelley Shepard Gray



Her Secret (Avon Inspire, March 2017)
A suspenseful tale of a young Amish woman who is forced to move to a new town to escape a threatening stalker
After a stalker went too far, Hannah Hilty and her family had no choice but to leave the bustling Amish community where she grew up. Now she’s getting a fresh start in Hart County, Kentucky…if only she wasn’t too scared to take it. Hannah has become afraid to trust anyone—even Isaac, the friendly Amish man who lives next door. She wonders if she’ll ever return to the trusting, easy-going woman she once was.
For Isaac Troyer, the beautiful girl he teasingly called “The Recluse” confuses him like no other. When he learns of her past, he knows he’s misjudged her. However, he also understands the importance of being grateful for God’s gifts, and wonders if they will ever have anything in common. But as Hannah and Isaac slowly grow closer, they realize that there’s always more to someone than meets the eye.
Just as Hannah is finally settling into her new life, and perhaps finding a new love, more secrets are revealed and tragedy strikes. Now Hannah must decide if she should run again or dare to fight for the future she has found in Hart County.
Shelley Shepard Gray

{MORE ABOUT SHELLEY SHEPARD GRAY}

Shelley Shepard Gray is the “New York Times” and “USA Today” bestselling author of the Seasons of Sugarcreek series, the Sisters of the Heart series, and the Families of Honor series. She lives with her family in southern Ohio, where she writes full time. Before her work in the inspirational market, Gray wrote several novels as Shelley Galloway. During this time her books appeared on the Waldenbooks bestseller list, and she won “RT Book Reviews'” prestigious Reviewers’ Choice Award.
Find out more about Shelley at http://www.shelleyshepardgray.com.

My Take:  I found this book to be a very edge of your set type of book that you don't always find in amish Fiction.  This book showed that the adversion that the Amish have to asking for help not only from the English but from other Amish isn't always the best as sometimes the problem just gets bigger and bigger.  The problem in this book was not solved by not asking for help but made worse and the victim just felt worse and was made to feel like it was their fault.  Later in the book it was shown how other people in the victims family felt like they were being a bother when they asked for help.  This definately is not your run of the mill Amish book.  

I received a review copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review.  

5 book giveaway



The next book to keep you up way past your bedtime? Shelley Shepard Gray’s Her Secret, a suspenseful tale of a young Amish woman who is forced to move to a new town to escape a threatening stalker. Just as Hannah is finally settling into her new life, and perhaps finding a new love with Isaac (the friendly Amish man who lives next door), more secrets are revealed and tragedy strikes. Hannah must decide if she should run again or dare to fight for the future she has found in Hart County.
Enter to win a copy of Her Secret. Five winners will be chosen! Click the image below to enter to win. The winners will be announced April 3rd on the Litfuse blog!

Sealed Up by Steve Dunn Hanson

Sealed Up: The Course of Fate--Book One

from Goodreads.com : The Da Vinci Code unsettles. SEALED UP shakes to the core!

UCLA anthropologist Nathan Hill, in a funk since his young wife’s death, learns of staggering millennia-old chronicles sealed up somewhere in a Mesoamerica cliff. This bombshell rocks him out of his gloom, and he leads a clandestine expedition to uncover them. What are they? Who put them there? No one knows. But, self-absorbed televangelist Brother Luke, who funds the expedition, thinks he does. If he’s right, his power-hunger will have off-the-charts gratification.

Striking Audra Chang joins Nathan in his pursuit and brings her own shocking secret. As they struggle through an incredible jungle of puzzles and dead ends, she finds herself falling in love with Nathan. Her secret, though, may make that a non-starter.

When a shaman with a thirst for human sacrifice, and a murderous Mexican drug lord with a mysterious connection to Brother Luke emerge, the expedition appears doomed. Yet Nathan is convinced that fate—or something—demands these inscrutable chronicles be unearthed.

And if they are . . . what shattering disruption will they unleash?

Intricately layered and remarkably researched, this enthralling suspense thriller begs a startling question: Could it happen?

My Take:  I found this book to be an ok book.  There were a lot of  Spanish words that were not translated so if you didn't speak Spanish you might be a little lost in places like I was.  I thought that the archeology theme was interesting as I have always been interested that you find out how people lived by what they left behind and what is in the ground in the rocks and soil.  I found the theme of founding of the Mormon church interesting.  I did feel like there was a climax toward the middle of the book and that the end of the book was a bit anticlimatic.  I see that this is a book one so maybe that was the reason.  I will be interested to read the next book and see what happens next.  I do hope that these characters come back.  

I received a review copy of this book from Pump up your Book in exchange for my honest review.  

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Prayers for a Simpler Life by Faith Sommers

Prayers for a Simpler Life: Meditations from the Heart of a Mennonite Mother ;

Prayers for a Simpler Life by Faith Sommers

From Goodreads.com   Do your quiet times with God feel disconnected from the rest of your overflowing days? Shouldn't our devotions affect how we live our lives? In this 90-day devotional for women, plain Mennonite mother and wife Faith Sommers helps connect your moments with the Lord to the rest of your life. Steeped in the faith of Amish and Mennonites, who maintain that how we live is as important as what we say, Sommers' words hold gentle warmth and wise nudging for readers tired of disjointed living. Offering daily devotions, prayers, journal prompts, and ideas for how to simplify your life and strengthen your faith, Prayers for a Simpler Life guides readers toward a deeper commitment to the way of Jesus.

My Take :  I was suppose to post this review last week but I didn't get the book until the day I was suppose to post so then I was suppose to post the review either on Monday or Tuesday of this week and for one reason or another I didn't find time to do that so I am posting today.  I am a bit happy that I didn't post till today because that gave me alittle more time to savor this book a bit more slowly which is kind of what this book is about.  Taking your time to spend meaningful time with the Lord.  Not just a read a short scripture and a little devotional about it then pray and your done short of thing.  Don't get me wrong these devotions aren't long and the Bible passages aren't either but they give you the opportunity to reflect on what you are reading and to really think about it.  Each devotion has a passage to look up and small article to read , a prayer and a reflection thought.  There are 12 whole weeks to really dig into.  each week is a different topic.  I look forward to using this devotional every year.  It would be perfect for the beginning of the year.  Highly recommend. 

I received a review copy of this book in exchange for my honest opinion from MennoMedia.org.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Home to Paradise by Barbara Cameron



Home to Paradise (Abingdon, February 2017)
Highly anticipated final book in The Coming Home Series from best-selling Amish author Barbara Cameron.
Rose Anna Zook has watched her two older sisters marry two Stoltzfus men and has always thought she and John, the third Stoltzfus brother, would marry, make a home together, and have children. But John has other ideas. He’s enjoying his Rumschpringe in the Englisch world a little too much and isn’t interested in returning to the Amish community—especially to marry.
Rose Anna is determined to bring her man back into the Amish fold. John is equally determined to live his life free and unencumbered. Who will win this battle of wills? Will love prevail?
Barbara Cameron

{MORE ABOUT BARBARA CAMERON}

Barbara Cameron has a heart for writing about the spiritual values and simple joys of the Amish. She is the best-selling author of more than 40 fiction and nonfiction books, three nationally televised movies, and the winner of the first Romance Writers of America Golden Heart Award. Her books have been nominated for Carol Awards and the Inspirational Reader’s Choice Award from RWA’s Faith, Hope, and Love chapter. Barbara resides in Jacksonville, Florida.
Find out more about Barbara at http://barbaracameron.com.


My Take;  Even though this is the third book in this triology I was able to read it with no problem and I hadn't read either of the first two books.  I liked reading this book as it seemed to shed a little light on the practice of the Amish young folks taking some time to run around before they join the Amish Church.   It also showed the Amish doing volunteer work in the community which you don't read about very much.  I will probably go back and read the other two books in this series because I found this book to be very good.  

I received a review copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. 



Monday, February 27, 2017

Dominion by D.A. Hewitt

Dominion

From Goodreads.com:
It's the year 2075. Lunar mining and processing facilities have prospered near the lunar south pole, where the Moon's largest city, Valhalla, rests on the rim of the Shackleton Crater.



Dominion Off-Earth Resources has beaten the competition into space and is ready to establish its monopoly with the opening of the orbiting space resort Dominion. But Pettit Space Industries has a secret plan to emerge as a major contender in the commercialization of space. The upstart company is training the first space rescue squad at a secluded off-grid site in Barrow, Alaska.



The rescue squad gets nearly more than it can handle when its first mission involves the Pope, who's traveling to the Moon to establish the Lunar See. During the rescue attempt, they discover Earth is imperiled by an asteroid large enough to cause mass extinction. Using the unique skills taught during their training, skills emphasized by the great psychoanalyst Carl Jung, these Jungi Knights must elevate their game if they are to save both the Earth and the Pope—while not getting killed in the process.
 


My Take:  This book was okay.  I found that some of the descriptions were a bit long and I didn't really get the whole Catholic church was a big part of the world politics and thus were a big part of the moon politics.  I liked the part of the story at the first that was set on earth more than the part that was set in space.  I have just recently started reading sci fi so maybe some of this is usual for the genre but it bugged me.  I thought that the two characters that were children of the founders of the two companies were a little selfish and didn't really think about how their actions were going to affect others.  There is insta love so if that is a turn off for you be aware.  Even though it may not seem like it.  I actually would like to see more of these characters just to see if they grow up any.  I think this was okay for a beginning but it could be alot more.  

I received a review copy of this book from Pump up Your book, in exchange for my honest review. 

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Guardian of Secrets by Brenda Drake

Guardian of Secrets (Library Jumpers, #2)

from Goodreads.com :  Being a Sentinel isn’t all fairytales and secret gardens.

Sure, jumping through books into the world’s most beautiful libraries to protect humans from mystical creatures is awesome. No one knows that better than Gia Kearns, but she could do without the part where people are always trying to kill her. Oh, and the fact that Pop and her had to move away from her friends and life as she knew it.

And if that isn’t enough, her boyfriend, Arik, is acting strangely. Like, maybe she should be calling him “ex,” since he’s so into another girl. But she doesn’t have time to be mad or even jealous, because someone has to save the world from the upcoming apocalypse, and it looks like that’s going to be Gia.

Maybe. If she survives.
 

My Take:  This was a great second book.  You definately need to read these books in order so you will know what is going on but you will want to as this is a great story.  This is a young adult fantasy series about Sentinels who can jump from portals that are located in books.   Hey if you are a book lover then this is just up your alley.  I enjoyed the first and second book and look forward to the third book.  Brenda Drake has a good writing ability and will keep you entranced and wandering what will happen next.  

I received a review Earc of this book, in exchange for my honest opinion, from Chapter by Chapter. 

Monday, February 6, 2017

The Mark of the King by Jocelyn Green



The Mark of the King (Bethany House, January 2017)
Sweeping historical fiction set at the edge of the continent
After being imprisoned and branded for the death of her client, twenty-five-year-old midwife Julianne Chevalier trades her life sentence for exile to the fledgling 1720s French colony of Louisiana, where she hopes to be reunited with her brother, serving there as a soldier. To make the journey, though, women must be married, and Julianne is forced to wed a fellow convict.
When they arrive in New Orleans, there is no news of Benjamin, Julianne’s brother, and searching for answers proves dangerous. What is behind the mystery, and does military officer Marc-Paul Girard know more than he is letting on?
With her dreams of a new life shattered, Julianne must find her way in this dangerous, rugged land, despite never being able to escape the king’s mark on her shoulder that brands her a criminal beyond redemption.
Jocelyn Green

{MORE ABOUT JOCELYN GREEN}

Jocelyn Green inspires faith and courage as the award-winning author of ten books to date, including “Wedded to War,” a Christy Award finalist in 2013; “Widow of Gettysburg”; “Yankee in Atlanta”; and “The 5 Love Languages Military Edition,” which she coauthored with bestselling author Dr. Gary Chapman. A former military wife herself, her passion for military families informs all of her writing as well as her numerous speaking opportunities. Jocelyn graduated from Taylor University with a BA in English and now lives with her husband and two children in Iowa.
Find out more about Jocelyn at http://www.jocelyngreen.com.



My Take:  I really enjoyed this book.  There was alot I learned about the start of Louisiana and the fight between the French and the English for land and settlers.  I also learned about how harsh the time could be especially toward women.  I thought the use of the different Indian tribes in the fight between the two countries was interesting.  This book kept my attention and had be turning the pages with anticipation about what would happen next.  
I received a review copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest opinion. 

Tuesday, January 31, 2017

You Carried Me by Melissa Ohden

You Carried Me: A Daughter's Memoir

From Goodreads.com : Melissa Ohden is fourteen when she learns she is the survivor of a botched abortion. In this intimate memoir she details for the first time her search for her biological parents, and her own journey from anger and shame to faith and empowerment. 
After a decade-long search Melissa finally locates her birth father and writes to extend forgiveness, only to learn that he has died without answering her burning questions. Melissa becomes a mother herself in the very hospital where she was aborted. This experience transforms her attitude toward women who have had abortions, as does the miscarriage of her only son and the birth of a second daughter with complex health issues. But could anything prepare her for the day she finally meets her birth mother and hears her side of their story?
This intensely personal story of love and redemption illumines the powerful bond between mother and child that can overcome all odds.
 

My Take:  I read this book with interest.  I was interested in how she found her birth mother and how she went about meeting her.  I felt very sorry for both her and her birth mother when she found out how she was a survivor of abortion.  I was interested in her faith journey and  why she went from being Methodist to converting to a Catholic.  

I received a review copy of this book from Handlebar in exchange for my honest opinion. 

Thursday, December 29, 2016

Of Stillness and Storm by Michele Phoenix

of-stillness-and-storm

Of Stillness and Storm (Thomas Nelson, December 2016)
“I felt torn between two worlds. Each with its own mystery. One more captivating than the other, but the other more real and breathing.”
It took Lauren and her husband ten years to achieve their dream—reaching primitive tribes in remote regions of Nepal. But while Sam treks into the Himalayas for weeks at a time, finding passion and purpose in his work among the needy, Lauren and Ryan stay behind, their daily reality more taxing than inspiring. For them, what started as a calling begins to feel like the family’s undoing.
At the peak of her isolation and disillusion, a friend from Lauren’s past enters her life again. But as her communication with Aidan intensifies, so does the tension of coping with the present while reengaging with the past. It’s thirteen-year-old Ryan who most keenly bears the brunt of her distraction.
Intimate and bold, Of Stillness and Storm weaves profound dilemmas into a tale of troubled love and honorable intentions gone awry.
Michèle Phoenix

{MORE ABOUT MICHÈLE PHOENIX}

Born in France to a Canadian father and an American mother, Michèle Phoenix is a consultant, writer and speaker with a heart for Third Culture Kids. She taught for 20 years at Black Forest Academy (Germany) before launching her own advocacy venture under Global Outreach Mission. Michèle travels globally to consult and teach on topics related to this unique people group. She loves good conversations, mischievous students, Marvel movies and paths to healing.
Find out more about Michèle at http://michelephoenix.com.


My take:  This book takes a look at a rare situation of a missionary spouse not being fully invested.  It takes a look at a wife who is a reluctant to be a missionary while her husband is the almost the perfect missionary.  She doesn't get the support that she needs in her marriage and as a parent as they have a 13 year old son who is a very reluctant participant and he becomes very depressed.  I can understand a bit as I am a preacher's kid and my dad wasn't home much as he was always at a meeting or visiting or some other ministry but he wasn't gone for weeks at a time.  But on the other hand my husband is a truck driver and was gone for weeks at a time during our children's young years.  Anyway all that to say that even though ministry is important your first ministry is to your family.  This is a good book that will make you think and make you feel for the characters. 

I received a review copy of this book from Litfuse in exchange for my honest opinions.