Monday, March 26, 2012

The Widow of Saunders Creek by Tracey Bateman- Highly Recommend!

After a devastating loss is it possible to have the promise of new hope?

Jarrod, who gave his life in military service left behind unforgetable memories and insatiable loneliness for his widow, Corrie. Six months after his death she traveled back to the familiar surroundings of Saunders Creek Missouri (a town that has a few secrets of its own), back to the fragrant lilac bushes, back to the home left to them by Jarrod's Grandmother.

Jarrod's cousin Eli, a talented contractor, lends a hand in fixing up the Jarrod's Grandmothers home, a place in much need of repair. But the home harbors it's own darkness and in Corrie's grief she is convinced that Jarrod has not left her. Is it possible to break the hold that is placed on her? Can faith be enough to save her from what lies within the spaces of the old home and bring with it the promise of new hope?

Five stars!!! If I could give this book more I would. Ms. Bateman has always spun creative and original stories and this one is no exception! She has a way of writing that will quickly draw the reader into the story and into the well developed characters lives and seem as if you have known them for a long time. This book would make a powerful movie. Suspenseful, frightening and romantic dialogue with twists and turns will hold your attention and keep you reading until the book is finished, as it is very very hard to put down. The storyline flowed smoothly with no dull parts, along with realistic scenery and easy dialogue kept me entertained and challenged my faith. The book cover seems to capture the novel. I would highly recommend this book to others!!! Very well written!! I received this book for free from Waterbrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Spirit Wars by Kris Vallotton- Eyeopening!

This book equips the reader with the tools needed for recognizing and combatting evil forces at work in our lives everyday. The author uses scripture passages that correspond with the material being presented. Included are many real life stories and the authors as well dealing with many of the chapters in the book.I seem to gravitate towards the thinking of "what if this happens or that?" I found my answers here and now know how satan can take life circumstances such as fear and cause weakness in a person and cause them to doubt themselves asking what if questions.A few of the topics discussed in detail are: dealing with depression and anxiety, putting on the armor of God and dealing with demon issues head on, how the flesh is weak, are Christians demonized, generational curses and how to break them, breaking contact with evil spirits and so many more. I found this book to be informative but was disappointed in a few of the chapters ie: Are you living in a haunted house? which really did not answer the question but dove into remarriage. Some chapters ie: Casting out demons and the authors life experiences with demons was very eyeopening also gave me cold chills.The book gave lots of ways to know if a spirit is of God or of satan which is very helpful. Overall I really did enjoy this keeper book and will use it. I found it cannot be read in a few hours more like a few days so the information can sink in and be reflected upon. I recommend this well documented and written book to eveyone. I received a complimentary copy from Chosen Books for my honest review.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Unashamed to Bear His Name by R.T. Kendall- my review

People seem to think of the here and now and not about eternity. This book is important in telling the truth about what you need to know to get into heaven (it's not about doing good deeds). This book addresses stigmas. A few of the other points addressed are: The meaning of vindication, the reasons we bear his name, how name calling is harmful, differences between the faiths and many others. The most helpful to me were controlling your tongue and eternal punishment. Some of the thoughts presented in the chapters I felt applied to himself only and the author made the point clear. The author seemed to feel very strongly about the differences between say Evangelicals, Charismatics and Pentecostals by calling attention to the fact of the problems associated in their religion. I did however read and reread several sections to grasp the material. A different kind of book that I am used to reading and I would recommend it to others especially new Christians or individuals who are in need of being saved. I received a free copy from Chosen Books for my review.

Monday, March 19, 2012

The Welcome Committee of Butternut Creek my review

No unmarried person is safe in Butternut Creek from the Widows.

Birdie and Mercedes (The Widows) enjoy finding new members for their church and new couples for their matchmaking skills.
Adam Jordan, 25, a newly appointed minister headed to Texas from Kentucky to the community of Butternut Creek, where everyone trusts everyone and a place where you can leave your doors unlocked. He has not come into town with much, but the overwhelming generousity of the community is welcome and he quickly finds himself feeling more at home.
Sam Peterson ex Marine in need of a kind word moved back to Butternut Creek to live in his late Aunts house.
Willow, physical therapist along with sons Nick and Leo find challenges even in this small community.
Small town setting with believable people and real life issues.

This is a great concept for a novel and when I started reading it hooked me into the storyline. It drug a bit towards the middle but quickly picked up.
On a positive note: Character development was strong and scenery works. The novel was easy going humorous at times and hearttearing at others especially at times when it focused on loneliness and the need for acceptance.
On a negative note: I feel strongly that profanity has no place in a Christian novel, no exception to that in my opinion. Sometimes the book read more like a secular novel.For the most part I was entertained and would recommend this book to others especially ones who enjoy secular fiction but who don't mind a "lite" Christian novel. Thanks to Faithwords and Netgalley the ARC for my review.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Half-Stitched Amish Quilting Club by Wanda Brunstetter- Original and excellent read!

Emma Yoder (widow) placed an ad in the local newspaper seeking students for a 6 wk quilting course that she would be teaching as a way to supplement her income. When they arrive at her home and at first glance she wonders if this is a mistake.

Ruby Lee looking to add some "fun" into her life
Paul Ramirez was looking for a way to finish his daughters heirloom quilt
Star Stephens misses her Grandmother and is searching for somewhere to fit in
Stuart & Pam Johnston in an effort to spend more time together agree to enroll in the class
Jan Sweet decided to do something creative

These people from different walks and situations in life learn how to quilt and discover that much can be accomplished when God is in control. Emma becomes not just an instructor in the art of quilting but an instument God uses in bringing about success in others lives.
This novel is so unique in the Amish fiction genre. The pages kept turning and the more I read the more I was hooked into the storyline. Not only does it incorporate the lives of the Amish (for what the author is known to portray well) but strongly adds the element concept of bringing into the picture the lives of the English. A very original, fresh, down to earth and creative read with well developed, realistic and personable characters will keep the reader entertained and satisfied. I love the book cover and it seems to portray the characters acurately. Book has some twists and turns, loved the ending! I found the overall message to be inspiring and would highly recommend this book to others. Very well written! Thanks to Barbour Publishing for this review copy for my review.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Promise Me This by Cathy Gohlke- Incredible and Mesmerizing

Michael Dunnigan was summoned to help carry supplies onboard the Titanic. As he took in the lavish accomodations around the ship it was a sight to behold in his young eyes.

Owen Allen enroute to America, via the Titanic, leaving the stiffling rule of his Aunt Eleanor Hargrave, promises to send for his sister Annie once he arrives and settles into his new home.

When Michael meets Owen the two seem to share a common bond each helping the other tie up loose ends before Owen boards. On one fortunate night Michael "found" his ticket onboard the luxury liner. Owen plans to teach Michael all he knows about horticulture, but before his plans materialize Titanic sinks taking with her hopes and dreams for the future. Michael arrives at the Allen Gardens in America clearly and painfully aware of the sacrifice taken for him. He longs for acceptance as Annie longs to come to the States to fulfill Owens wishes.

With World War I now upon the world and the young eager to assist in the war effort, there are decisions that must be made but with imminent consequences left to be endured. How will Annie and Michael withstand further heartbreak, and with the uncertainty in the midst of the reality of war, is it possible that true love can be found?

A romantic and realistic novel rich in historical content and scenery captured me and refused to let me go. As I read I quickly became "lost" in the storyline, I found it quite impossible to put down. Possibly a forth of the book was about the ill fated maiden voyage of the Titanic and it's occupants, the remaining parts told the story of what happened to Michael and the Allen family following the Titanic sinking and into World War I. Very easily 5 stars as character development and dialogue were expertly written and I felt as if I knew them and were there watching the story unfold before me. With a twist ending this inspiring and well written novel challenged my faith and kept me entertained. I will recommend the book to others. Thanks to Tyndale House Publishers for this complimentary copy for me for my review.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Lilac Wedding in Dry Creek by Janet Tronstad- Excellent!

Jake Stone is coming home for his brothers wedding. Jake had a troubling youth and now that he is back home he is ready for new challenges that lie ahead.

Cathy Barker single mom to daughter Lara wants the best for her young child and is willing to protect her at all costs. When Cathy was younger she ran away leaving Jake to pick up the pieces.

Is Jake willing to be the kind of guy a child can look up to? Can he be a knight in shining armor? Can Cathy trust a secret to the one person she values above all others even if it means losing her heart in the process?

I was entertained by this realistically romantic hard to put down read. With well developed characters and charming scenery this is a book that is sure to please! Lilacs are my favorite and I loved the way the author incorporated them into her story. This is the first book I have read from the Dry Creek Series (and will not be the last) I found I was able to easily jump right into the storyline without any problems, although is part of a series, it is an excellent stand alone novel. Dialogue and plot flowed well without any dull parts. I would highly recommend this book to others. Thanks so much to the author for providing a complimentary copy to me for my review. Enjoyed it!