Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Book Review - "Driftwood Lane"

Denise Hunter's latest installment in her Nantucket Love Story series has arrived! "Driftwood Lane" focuses on Meridith Ward, stable, serious, engaged to an accountant and afraid to let herself fall in love. Meridith receives a shocking phone call while at work one day. Her father, who abandoned her and her now deceased mother years ago, and his new wife have not survived a boating accident and have named Meridith as the guardian for their three children - three children whom Meridith has never met.
This begins a life change for Meridith. She moves from St. Louis to Nantucket to care for these children until their uncle returns from riding around the country on his motorcycle. Upon arrival at the family home, Meridith finds their home, a bed and breakfast, not up to codes and begins to make repairs with the intent of selling.
Jake, or Uncle J, as referred to by his niece and nephews receives a shocking e-mail one night letting him know of his sister's sudden death and the welfare of the children. Jake afraid that he will not be able to see the children and hoping to find Meridith, the children's guardian unfit for the job, arrives at the bed and breakfast as a worker for the many repairs that need to be done, nothing more.
Meridith finds herself falling in love with the children and finds herself faced with the choice - the children or her future husband. Thrown into the midst of this is the unsettling feelings that Meridith is experiencing around Jake and whenever she thinks about him.
Filled with various relationships, past hurts, secrets, and the possibility for new family bonds and love, Denise Hunter has created a story that will keep you engrossed to the end. This is wonderfully written and easy to read as the story pulls you in and holds your interest. A great "summery" read!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Book Review: "A Love of Her Own"

Longing for a change and some adventure, April McBride heads off to Lewistown, Montana to attend her brother Josh's wedding. But, there is no way that April expected all that she encountered on the way and once arriving in Lewistown.
April who is first introduced in book 1 of Maggie Brendan's Heart of the West series as Luke's fiancee, returns as the main character in book 3, "A Love of Her Own," of the series. April has guarded her heart and not giving any man a chance since her engagement with Luke is broken. After riding a horse for hours, coming face to face with horse-trainer Wes and slipping into her brother's wedding ceremony dressed as a male, April realizes her life is about to change. April quickly learns to adjust to life without a maid and having endless money at her disposal. She makes new friends and learns what it is like to help people and feel needed. April shares her abilities by helping out driving the stagecoach and also working with a young girl who is struggling to walk again. Wes begins to fill April's mind and although he is not the type of man she normally would have chosen or someone her parents would be likely to approve of, April finds herself falling for him.
Brendan brings to life the mid-west in the late 1800's and creates likeable characters that although in a different time period, the reader can relate to and experience their emotions while reading their stories. This book (and series) as a whole are quick reads, I did not want to stop reading once I started! Brendan's writing style is very easy to read and is so vivid that the story just comes to life. This series is a must-read for those who enjoy historical romance fiction!

“Available June 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Book Review: "Sarah's Garden"

It seems as if there are more and more authors writing Amish novels these days. However, Kelly Long is an author you do not want to miss out on! I read her work as part of "An Amish Christmas," and now a new novel by her, "Sarah's Garden" has been released. "Sarah's Garden" is book one in a A Patch of Heaven Series.
Sarah is a shy Amish woman and prefers to be working in her kitchen garden. Through some circumstances that arise, Sarah finds herself immersing into the English world and she meets an English veterinarian, Grant. Sarah has never felt like this before, but can she really be falling in long with an Englisher? Sarah finds herself in a struggle of following her heart or remaining true to her family and roots - basically her whole life up until now. Long uses great imagery and descriptions to help the reader create wonderful visual pictures throughout the book which adds to the enjoyment of reading the book and working through this struggle with Sarah.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Book Review - "Out of the Spin Cycle"

Do you ever feel as a mother that you are part of a load of laundry on a continual spin cycle and cannot get off? There is just always a hundred things grabbing your attention and time all at once, leading to feelings of stress and being overwhelmed.
Jen Hatmaker has complied 40 devotionals in her book, "Out of the Spin Cycle - devotions to lighten your mother load." Filled with humor and stories, Hatmaker relates everyday incidents and experiences as a mother to various passages that will give you hope and help you to relax - for a few moments anyways! Seriously, this book is great to help you as a mother take a few moments a day to rely on God and spend time in his Word as a reminder that you are not alone!
Hatmaker shares incidents of spending loads of money on toddler clothing to dealing with the Santa issue in her home. This is an upbeat, down to earth devotional book for moms!

“Available June 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Book Review - "The Homecoming"

If you have read Dan Walsh's "The Unfinished Gift," then his sequel, "The Homecoming" is a must-read! If you have not read "The Unfinished Gift" then read that book, and then this sequel! These two books contain in them a wonderful story set during World War II of three generations and how the three males in the family grow in their relationships with each other.
I love how this book picks up and continues on with where the story ended in "The Unfinished Gift." Shawn returns home after he learns of his wife's death and this forces him to come face to face with his estranged father who is caring for Shawn's son. Shawn is hoping to be home to raise his son and also spend time with his father as they are rebuilding their relationship. However, this is not the military's plan as Shawn is now considered a hero. With Shawn traveling and his father not in the best health, Shawn hires Katherine, the social worker, to be Patrick's nanny. "The Homecoming" continues to build the relationships between the three Collins men and also the new budding relationship between Shawn and Katherine. Also, the reader learns more about when Shawn is MIA and his new-found hero status.
Dan Walsh is a new author who I am looking forward to seeing more books by him published. Walsh is a gifted storyteller and his books are not ones to be missed!

“Available June 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Friday, June 11, 2010

Book Review - "Love on a Dime"

Have you ever kept something a secret from your family and loved ones because you thought it would bring them shame? Welcome to Lilly Westbrook's life, her life that is really a mystery to all except for her close friend Miranda. Cara Lynn James brings Lilly Westbrook to life in her Ladies of Summerhill novel, "Love on a Dime." Lilly is a lady of society engaged to a man who will bring her family to higher social status in the year of 1899. However, this is several years after she gave her heart to a man who was not of social standing to be deemed appropriate by Lilly's parents. When this man Jackson reenters her life, Lilly is forced to deal with her feelings toward Jackson and decide if she is really over him or not. Added to this, Lilly finds out that Jackson is the recent owner of a publishing company, a publishing company that publishes dime novels written by a Miss Fannie Cole. Miss Cole's true identity is a mystery to all, however Jackson's goal is to discover who she really is. Will Lilly be able to keep her secret of being an authoress a secret from Jackson and her fiancee and family? The stakes are raised when Lilly is blackmailed and when a rival publisher offers more money, which Lilly could really use to help support a charity she contributes to.
James delivers a novel that draws the reader into the character's struggles and dilemmas. Lilly is conflicted as to what to do in regards to her love life and also her secret work that is frowned upon by society. There are so many relationships between the characters that are developed well throughout the book and these along with the minor plots will draw the reader in until the very last sentence.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Book Review - "Momology - a mom's guide to shaping great kids"

Shelly Radic, chief of staff at MOPS International, brings a handy book for mothers, "Momology - A Mom's Guide to Shaping Great Kids." This book is very easy to read and follow as it is split into 4 main sections. The first part, "Core" focuses on you as the mother, and this section is filled with topics such as emotions that you may deal with as a mother, and encourages you to think about your strengths and weaknesses. "Finesse" really focuses on the art of mothering and all that is included with this including making decisions and creating traditions. "Circle" is the third part and this focuses on others around you - acquaintances, family members including your husband and extended family. Everyone has a different circle based upon circumstances and how your life is lived. Stay at home moms may feel more isolated than working mothers or they may not depending on the network that each mother has plugged herself into. However, each of us needs supportive people in our lives for encouragement, help and someone who will listen. The fourth and last section is "Grandscape" focusing on God and the world as a whole around us.
This is the first MOPS book that I have read and I was not disappointed. It is filled with great insights from Radic. The book is designed in a way that it can be easily used with a group and have wonderful discussions or for use another with questions that can be pondered and perhaps shared in a journal or blog. This book can help moms feel more comfortable in the role of a mother and be a great learning tool.

“Available June 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Friday, June 4, 2010

Book Review - "Uncovered"

Susie Davis has brought a very real, straightforward book for all of us wives out there titled, "Uncovered - revealing the secrets of a sexy marriage." Davis gets the message across that while we may wear several "hats" in our lives, our number one priority is being a wife; therefore our number one priority is our husband. Each chapter focuses on a relevant topic that will make you think more about yourself, your role as a wife and your relationship with your husband. Then there is a section to each chapter that is "uncovering the truth." This takes what you have just read and asks point blank questions that will really make you think and consider your relationship and why things are the way they are with you and your marriage. Davis even includes sections called "the male room" which has responses from men to various questions.
This is a must read for every wife, no matter how young or old, newlywed or been married for years and years. This book will really force you to think about your marriage and how you and your marriage has changed since the day you said "I do."

“Available May 2010 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”