Saturday, December 22, 2012

Book Review - "A Christmas Homecoming"

Enter Today - 12/8-12/22! A Christmas Homecoming by MaryAnn Diorio Grab a copy of MaryAnn Diorio's "A Christmas Homecoming" for JUST .99! MaryAnn is celebrating by giving away a Paperwhite Kindle! Details below!

One "merry" winner will receive:
  • A Paperwhite Kindle
  • A Christmas Homecoming by MaryAnn Diorio
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on December 22nd. Winner will be announced on 12/23/12 at MaryAnn's Blog.

Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning.

Book Info
About A Christmas Homecoming:
Seven Christmases have passed since Sonia Pettit last heard from her daughter Jody. Since Jody's departure, Sonia's world has been turned upside down. Her husband has died of a broken heart, and her son, bitter over his sister's destructive actions, has become rebellious.
Her greatest desire is to have her family together at Christmas, but after what Jody has put them all through, can Sonia truly forgive her daughter?
Jody Pettit O'Dair ran away to experience a life of adventure and excitement, but since her departure, her world has been turned upside down. She's been abandoned by the man she met and married, lost her job, and is unable to care for her two children. With nowhere else to turn, this prodigal daughter begins the long journey home and prays she will be welcomed after walking away so long ago.
Will Jody find forgiveness in the arms of her family as easily as she received it from God?
Link to buy the book:
Meet MaryAnn:
Dr. MaryAnn Diorio loves God, people, children, and dogs, in that order. She also is passionate about story and its power to transform the human heart. Dr. MaryAnn, as she is affectionately called, writes compelling fiction that deals with the deepest issues of life. She is Adjunct Online Professor of Fiction Writing for Regent University and coaches writers on their journey to publication. MaryAnn and her husband Dominic are the blessed parents of two wonderful daughters and a fantastic son-in-law.
Find out more about MaryAnn at
My Review:
This is such a wonderful Christmas story that will put you right into the Christmas spirit!  Curl up with a mug of hot chocolate, a cozy blanket and join a family that is experiencing heartbreak, but finds hope, and forgiveness.  Jody thought she was missing out on life and left home, actually to another country, with no word to her family.  During seven years, so much as taken place in Jody's life as well as the life of her family, including the death of her father.  Jody decides to return home with her twins and they arrive on Christmas Eve, not knowing if they will be welcomed or not. Jody must face her fears as well as her guilt for having left so many years earlier when she decides she is going to return home.  Jody is not expecting her father to have passed away or the anger and bitterness that her younger brother has toward her.  Not only Jody, but her mother and brother as well, learn the importance of forgiveness, hope and love this Christmas. This is a touching story that will remain with you long after you finish reading it. 
*I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Book Review - "Secrets"

Robin Jones Gunn's Glenbrooke Series begins with book 1 "Secrets."  This is a book that I enjoyed and read through very quickly!
Jessica wishes to forget her past and move on by starting a new life.  However, Jessica's move starts out with an accident right outside of town resulting in a rescue from a very handsome man, Kyle.  Jessica finds herself teaching in the local school, becoming best friends with Teri and fighting her feelings for her rescuer Kyle. Adding additional drama is the principal whom wants Kyle for herself and decides to make Jessica's life miserable and other roadblocks that are through in Jessica's way.  Jessica finds herself as a part of a missions trip and this is life changing for her in several ways including the most important, finding her way to Christ. 
Each and everyone of us has secrets of some kind and Jessica is trying to hold onto her secrets and start a new life.  I found Jessica to be a great main character as she was so "real," meaning she could be a friend or the girl next door and she was easy to relate to and empathize with.  Kyle is also a main character who was great and a man whom I'm sure many would love to have rescue them and fall in love with!  However, Teri was my favorite character.  There is something about her as she is by no means perfect as no one is, but she is such a loyal friend to Jessica and has an infectious personality.  I highly recommend this to anyone who enjoys Christian romance and wants to escape for a few hours to Glenbrooke!

*I received a complimentary copy of this book from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Company in exchange for a honest review.*

Book Review - "An Amish Kitchen"

"An Amish Kitchen" is a collection of three Amish novellas written by Beth Wiseman, Amy Clipston and Kelly Long,  three women whom write wonderful Amish stories! 

Book Description from the publisher:

The Amish Kitchen is the Heart of the Home – and the Ideal Setting for Stories of Love and Hope.

Fall in Paradise, Pennsylvania, always brings a brisk change in the weather. This season also ushers in unexpected visitors, new love, and renewed hope for three women.

Fern has a green thumb for growing healing herbs, but longs for love to bloom in her life. Then the next-door neighbor’s oldest son, Abram, comes running into Fern’s kitchen seeking help for his little sister. The crisis soon leads to a promise of romance—until mistrust threatens to end the growing attraction.

Nearby, Hannah runs her parents’ bed and breakfast, Paradise Inn—but her life feels nothing like Paradise. She longs for a man of integrity to enter her life, but never expected him to knock on the front door looking for a room. Will she be able trust Stephen with her future once she discovers his mysterious past?

When a storm blows a tree onto Eve’s farmhouse, she has little choice but to temporarily move her family into her parents’ home. Outside of cooking together in the kitchen, Eve and her mother can’t agree on anything. But this may be just the recipe for hope in healing old wounds.

Three Amish stories—each celebrating love, family, and faith—all taking place in a tight-knit community where the kitchen truly is the heart of the home.

Also Includes Reading Group Guide and 45 Old Order Amish Recipes

My Review -

This book really is a quick read as it is split  into three novellas.  I was immediately drawn into each of the three stories as well into the lives of the characters.  Fern, Hannah and Eve are all strong main characters and although I loved their stories, I would love to read more about these women as well!  Each woman is faced with choices, decisions and the prospect of love and each much learn to look to God, rely upon Him and follow their hearts. 

*I was provided with a complimentary copy of this book from Thomas Nelson Publishers in exchange for a honest review.*

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Book Review & Party with giveaways! - "No Safe Harbor"

Enter Today - 11/15-12/5! No Safe Harbor by Elizabeth Ludwig Elizabeth Ludwig is celebrating her new book with a Kindle Fire Giveaway and connecting with readers at a Facebook Author Chat party on 12/6.

One winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire
  • No Safe Harbor by Elizabeth Ludwig
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on December 5th. Winner will be announced at the "No Safe Harbor" Author Chat Facebook Party on 12/6. Connect with Elizabeth, get a sneak peek of the next book in the Edge of Freedom series, try your hand at the trivia contest, and win some great prizes—gift certificates, books and a Book Club Prize Pack (10 copies for your book club or small group)!

So grab your copy of No Safe Harbor and join Elizabeth on the evening of the December 6th for a chance to connect with her and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 6th!

Book Info
About No Safe Harbor:
She came to America searching for her brother. Instead all she's found is a web of danger.
Cara Hamilton had thought her brother to be dead. Now, clutching his letter, she leaves Ireland for America, desperate to find him. Her search leads her to a houseful of curious strangers, and one man who claims to be a friend-Rourke Walsh. Despite her brother's warning, Cara trusts Rourke, revealing her purpose in coming to New York.
She's then thrust into a world of subterfuge, veiled threats, and attempted murder, including political revolutionaries from the homeland out for revenge. Her questions guide her ever nearer to locating her brother-but they also bring her closer to destruction as those who want to kill him track her footsteps.
With her faith in tatters, all hope flees. Will her brother finally surface? Can he save Cara from the truth about Rourke... a man she's grown to love?
Link to buy the book:
Meet Elizabeth:
Elizabeth Ludwig is an award-winning author and an accomplished speaker and teacher. Her historical novel Love Finds You in Calico, California earned four stars from Romantic Times. She is the owner and editor of the popular literary blog The Borrowed Book. Along with her husband and two children, Elizabeth makes her home in Orange, Texas.
My Review:

This is the first book I have read by this author and it will not be my last!  I am looking forward to the release of book 2 in Ludwig's Edge of Freedom series.  As soon as I opened this book and began to read I was transported back in time in the year of 1897 in New York City.  The writing is so descriptive and vivid that I felt that I was a part of the story and Cara's search.  Cara and Rourke are both such great main characters.  They became real to me throughout the story and I empathized with them as they are both searching for Cara's brother, truth and freedom, as well as battling their feelings for each other at the same time. I do not want to share too much about the story except to tell you to be prepared to want to keep on reading until you have finished the story as there are twists and turns and unsavory characters and situations that will have you cringing, and hoping for truth and discoveries for Cara and Rourke. 

To read other reviews click here:

*I received a complimentary copy of this book in exchange for a honest review.*


Saturday, December 1, 2012

.Welcoming Christmas.

While I will "officially" start listening to Christmas music the day after Thanksgiving and that is traditionally my day to begin decorating for Christmas, December 1st is really the start to the Christmas season!  Being December it seems that Christmas is just that much closer to coming, it is the beginning of the countdown to Christmas (I made Advent calendars for the kids, more on that in another post!), and now it is really time to think about Christmas shopping and deciding what treats will be made this year!  I cannot believe it is already this time of the year, but we are ready for the season and welcoming Christmas!

Book Review - "Nowhere but Up"

Pattie Mallette shares her story with A.J. Gregory in her book, "Nowhere but Up: The Story of Justin Bieber's Mom," to reach people and give hope.
Pattie's son is well-known and this fame is giving her the opportunity to share her story and life with others.  Pattie shares her life from a rough childhood filled with abuse and low self-esteem to becoming a teenage mother to living out her faith and raising her son.  This book is very well-written and one that will encourage each and every reader.   I highly recommend this for every girl who has struggled with self-esteem, or teenage pregnancy especially. 

Shared by the publishers:

Pattie is using her platform as Justin’s mom to reach people who are suffering and wants her story to give them hope, that when you hit rock bottom, there’s nowhere to go but up. For more info check out the book’s website:
Here’s a link to Pattie sharing her story with Anderson Cooper on his show Anderson LIVE (scroll down for videos):