Wednesday, January 31, 2018

An in-depth look at John 14-17

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"The Farewell Discourse and Final Prayer of Jesus" is a book that will offer a deeper look into the gospel of John, specifically chapters 14-17.  If you are confused by what you have read and heard in regards to Jesus' final days on Earth, then this is the book for you as it helps explain and will result in a deeper and clearer understanding.  Each chapter in the book focuses on a specific scripture and D.A. Carson dives into these verses and does a thorough explanation of the what is being said, the setting and other pertinent background information that all help explain the meaning of what is being shared.  This would make a great book for Pastors, Sunday School teachers, anyone in the role of teaching and explaining passages to others. 

*Thanks to the Baker Books Blogger Review Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Tuesday, January 30, 2018


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The latest suspense novel from Samuel Parker, "Coldwater" is a read that will keep you turning the pages late into the night.  Michael has moved back home, to the empty home of his childhood, back to the town that hates him.  He is again on the run, but he managed to escape the first time.  Michael is unable to escape his past, his past that had him sentenced as a child to a state prison and although he has served his time, not everyone agrees with that.  And honestly, does Michael agree with that?
This book addresses so much, but ultimately our choices and God's role as well as a demonic aspect.  Who has control of our actions, who or what allows us to make the choices we do, how is Michael protected at times?  All of these are interwoven throughout the story as Michael rights for survival instead of his destruction. 
Samuel has created strong characters that are well-developed and a twisting storyline that keeps you reading and just holding your breath waiting for what is going to happen next.  This is a dark novel, definitely not a nice, cozy read, but one that will have you thinking, your heart racing and praying for the best outcome possible. 

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Review Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Monday, January 22, 2018

High Treason

"High Treason" is book #3 in DiAnn Mills' FBI Task Force series and it is another fast-paced, cannot turn the pages fast enough read!  I also sit down to just start reading a chapter or two and then before I know it I am halfway through the book; happens every time with DiAnn's novels!
Kord and Monica are forced to work together when an attempt on Prince Omar's life is made when he travels to Houston with his mother for medical treatment.  Kord is none to happy about having to work with Monica, but he knows that she is qualified and can handle the job of protecting his friend.  When more information comes out as to the visit here in the United States and what it means for the two countries, the suspect list greatly increases as does their need to protect the prince and also themselves as well as kick their investigation into high gear. 

Monica and Kord are both great main characters!  I really enjoyed "getting to know" both of them and also loved their interactions and watching them work together and build a relationship.  The storyline is fast-paced, but not so much that it was hard to follow.  It kept me turning the pages and wanting to find out what was going to happen next as it is filled with so many twist and turns.  This book is highly recommended! 

To read chapter 1 of this book, go here!  Once you start reading, you will not want to stop!

*Thanks to the Tyndale Blog Network for the complimentary copy of this book.*

The Melody of the Soul by Liz Tolsma Blog Tour, Giveaway, and Facebook Live

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The Melody of the Soul by Liz Tolsma
Travel back in time to 1943 and meet Anna Zadok, a Jewish Christian and concert violinist whose career is ended because of Nazi occupation in Prague. Don't miss the new historical novel, The Melody of the Soul, by Liz Tolsma. Though musical instruments have been declared illegal, Anna defiantly continues to play the violin. But Officer Horst Engel, quartered in Anna's flat and dissatisfied with German ideology, enjoys her soothing music. When Anna and her grandmother face deportation, Horst risks everything to protect them.

Join Liz Tolsma and other bookworms for a Facebook Live event on February 6, plus enter to win Liz's prize pack giveaway!

One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on February 6. The winner will be announced at Liz's Facebook Live Party. RSVP for a chance to connect with Liz and other readers, as well as for a chance to win other prizes!

RSVP today and spread the word-tell your friends about the giveaway and Facebook Live party via social media and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 6th!

Book info

About the book:

Anna has one chance for survival-and it lies in the hands of her mortal enemy.

It's 1943 and Anna Zadok, a Jewish Christian living in Prague, has lost nearly everything. Most of her family has been deported, and the Nazi occupation ended her career as a concert violinist. Now Anna is left to care for her grandmother, and she'll do anything to keep her safe-a job that gets much harder when Nazi officer Horst Engel is quartered in the flat below them.

Though musical instruments have been declared illegal, Anna defiantly continues to play the violin. But Horst, dissatisfied with German ideology, enjoys her soothing music. When Anna and her grandmother face deportation, Horst risks everything to protect them.

Anna finds herself falling in love with the handsome officer and his brave heart. But what he reveals might stop the music forever.

About the Author:
Best-selling novelist Liz Tolsma is the author of several World War II novels and prairie romance novellas. She also works as a freelance editor. She lives in a semirural area of Wisconsin with her husband and two daughters. Her son serves with the US Marines. All of their children came to them through international adoption. Her other passions include walking, gardening, camping, and reading.
Find out more about Liz at
My Review:
Liz Tolsma has written great historical fiction novels and her latest, "The Melody of the Soul," is her best yet in my opinion.  Anna is a concert violinist; however her career has been halted by Nazi occupation in Prague.  Anna is left caring for her grandmother after the rest of her family has been deported and Anna is determined to protect her grandmother and also play her violin even though it has been banned.  When a Nazi officer is living beneath them, the risk is greater. 
Liz has done an incredible job with historical details and bringing the time period and setting to life.  Compared to the life I have lived, I cannot imagine having to life a life that so many had to years ago under Nazi rule.  However, Liz has given me a vivid snapshot of what life was like and the horror and fear that Anna and so many others would have been living with in their daily lives.  While Liz creates the harsh aspect of this, she also ties in hope and bright spots throughout the story, such that comes from the beauty of music and also unexpected friendships/relationships. 
I highly recommend this novel to anyone whom enjoys historical fiction!  To read other reviews included on this blog tour, go here!
*Thanks to the Litfuse Publicity Group for including me on this blog tour and for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Friday, January 19, 2018

"Troubled Waters"

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I was so excited for the next book in Susan May Warren's Montana Rescue series to be released and it was so good!  "Troubled Waters" continues on with the saga of Peak Rescue and Ian searching for his niece Esme.  However, Ian has decided to leave things be and not search for Esme since apparently she does not want to be found by him and he is facing another dilemma as his funds have been frozen and he is considering moving back to Texas.  Without Ian, will Peak Rescue survive?  This is troubling to Sierra especially as this is her only job right now, her "family" and of course she is in love with Ian, although he wants nothing to do with her as she kept Esme's secret from him.  Sierra plans a trip on Ian's yacht to raise funds, and Ian decides to join them; however, the trip does not go according to the plan. 
This was such a great book!  It really tied up a few things and really advanced the storyline that has been carrying through the series.  Pete returned and so he and Jess have their story continues as well as all of the other characters.  I was disappointed at the end of the book as it left me hanging a bit and  I just wanted to keep reading to find out what happens next!  This is such a great series and if you hadn't read any of it, do not start with this one, but start with book #1 so you get the full complete story. 

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Review Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Thursday, January 18, 2018

new from Mesu Andrews!

The latest historical fiction novel from Mesu Andrews is now released and it is another wonderful read from her!  "Isaiah's Daughter: a novel of Prophets and Kings" takes the reader to Biblical times and to the period a divided nation for the Hebrews.  Mesu delves into the story of Hephzibah, who first was a household servant and later Queen, in the midst of tension between the tribes and a time full of fear while struggling to trust in God.   This an excellent book filled with historical detail and really gave me a new perspective on a Biblical story and characters as well as the culture and time period of the time.  I felt as if I was transported back to this time and really became immersed in the story that I could not believe how much I read when I sat down just to read the first chapter or two.  I am looking forward to what Mesu writes next as her books never disappoint!
Book Summary: Gifted Bible teacher and award-winning author Mesu Andrews reaches into the pages of Biblical prophecy and Hebrew tradition to unearth a rags-to-royalty story of the devastated orphan, Ishma—meaning “desolation”—in Isaiah’s Daughter (Jan. 16, 2018, WaterBrook).  At just 5 years old, Ishma’s life crumbles around her when Israelite soldiers violently kill her family and take her into captivity. Upon her release, the royal prophet Isaiah welcomes her into his home where she meets Prince Hezekiah (Hezi)—a boy who has also experienced great tragedy. Ishma and Hezi bond in their suffering, and as they grow in age, so does their love for each other. Aware of their developing relationship, Isaiah adopts Ishma as his daughter and presents her with a new name that will qualify her to marry royalty—Hephzibah (Zibah), meaning “delight of the Lord.” Hezi and Zibah marry, but after difficult times of barrenness, Assyrian aggression, disease and challenging prophecies from Isaiah, Zibah remains trapped by fear. Can she entrust everything to the only One who gives life and delivers both a captive heart and a desperate nation?

To read an excerpt from the book, click here: sneak peak!

Also, please check out what others are saying in celebration of Mesu's new book!: here!

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

"Long Black Veil"

What starts out as just 6 friends sneaking in, killing time, having fun together, turns into one of them disappearing.  Now years later, her remains are found and the question is who did it, and what really all happened that night so many years ago. 
"Long Black Veil" is the first book I have read by Jennifer Finney Boylan and it was an interesting read that held my attention as I learned bits and pieces about the characters and the backstory intermixed with the present day part of it.  Judith has moved on with her life and has a career and family, but she is also guarding secrets.  Although she knows things and can testify, it can destroy her life and her livelihood. 
There is a lot that comes up in this book, leading the reader to question about life and the life she is living.  Jennifer does a great job with creating the characters and the storyline as well as the mystery throughout of what all happened so many nights ago.  

To read more about this book, go here!

To read about the author, go here!

"I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review."

Friday, January 12, 2018

Energy, happiness, creativity, and relationships-how can anyone keep these fresh and thriving in the midst of never-ending stress of everyday life?

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Book info

About the book:

Staying busy is easy. Staying well rested- there's a challenge.
How can you keep your energy, happiness, creativity, and relationships fresh and thriving in the midst of never-ending family demands, career pressures, and the stress of everyday life? In Sacred Rest, Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith, a board-certified internal medicine doctor, reveals why rest can no longer remain optional.
Dr. Dalton-Smith shares seven types of rest she has found lacking in the lives of those she encounters in her clinical practice and research-physical, mental, spiritual, emotional, sensory, social, creative-and why a deficiency in any one of these types of rest can have unfavorable effects on your health, happiness, relationships, creativity, and productivity. Sacred Rest combines the science of rest, the spirituality of rest, the gifts of rest, and the resulting fruit of rest. It shows rest as something sacred, valuable, and worthy of our respect.
By combining scientific research with personal stories, spiritual insight, and practical next steps, Sacred Rest gives the weary permission to embrace rest, set boundaries, and seek sanctuary without any guilt, shame, or fear.
About the author:
Dr. Saundra Dalton-Smith is an author, speaker, and board-certified physician. She has an active medical practice in Alabama (near the Birmingham area). She received her B.S. in Biochemistry at the University of Georgia, and graduated with honors from Meharry Medical College in Nashville. She has been an adjunct faculty member at Baker College and Davenport University in Michigan teaching courses on health, nutrition, and disease progression. Dr. Dalton-Smith is a national and international media resource on the mind, body, spirit connection and has been featured in Women's Day, Redbook, and First For Women magazine. She is the author of "Set Free to Live" and "Come Empty" (winner 2016 Golden Scroll Nonfiction Book of the Year and 2016 Illumination Award Gold medalist). She is a member of the Christian Medical and Dental Association and a repeat keynote speaker at their annual gathering. She has shared her tips on merging faith and medicine with over 16,000 health care professionals to encourage the current and next generation of doctors to treat the whole person.
Find out more about Saundra at
My Review:
This is a great book for each and every person to read!  Life is so busy, the everyday life and responsibilities that go along with everything that it seems as if every second we are doing something or connected, as we are constantly checking e-mail, social media feeds, etc, when we are not interacting face to face with someone.  "Sacred Rest" addresses why rest is so important and the benefits or gifts that come from rest.  The first half of the book discusses the various times of rest that we all need, emotional, physical, sensory to name just a few.  Then the second half discusses the gifts of rest, productivity, reflection and boundaries to name a few.  The chapters are relatively short and perfect for reading through and reflecting on.  I suggest reading a chapter every couple of days to really let the words sink in.  The author suggests viewing this book as a buffet, meaning to take your time, savor each "dish," do not rush through this book, this is the opposite of this concept.  This is a great book to start out the new year reading to really help make this is a start of renewal and feeling refreshed. 
To read other reviews included on this blog tour, go here!
*Thanks to the Litfuse Publicity Group for including me on this blog tour and for the complimentary copy of this book.*

"The Lacemaker"

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I really enjoyed Laura Frantz' latest historical romance novel, "The Lacemaker."  Lady Elisabeth or "Liberty" has a wonderful life, she is a woman of position, engaged to a man who is prominent and a good match from the aspect of both of their positions.  However, this is a time of tension and unrest and is she willing to stay with her roots and the nice life that she is living or will she make a choice and follow the other side. 
This is a story rich with historical detail of the American Revolution era and the unrest between England and the colonies and the beginning of independence for this country.  Laura does a great job at bringing this time period to life and the emotions that are high and the struggle that so many faced with choosing a life that has always been or an unknown future that could be scary but full of so many opportunities.   I loved the characters as well in this book and their interactions.  Of course Liberty was a great main character and she was fascinating and easy to connect with and Noble was another great character and I loved their interactions and how he would fight for what he believed in. 
This is a great book and one not to miss if you are a fan of historical fiction!

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

"Missing Isaac"

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"Missing Isaac" is the debut novel from Valerie Fraser Luesse and it is well-written and hopefully the start of many more novels to come!
The reader is transported to the 60's, a time of turmoil and change in this little Southern town.  Isaac and Pete have an unlikely friendship, but this doesn't keep Pete from searching for him, this motivates him even more.  Pete begins a journey that he has no idea where it is going to take him and what he is going to learn and how he is going to change all along the way.  
This story paints such a vivid picture for me of how society was at this time and growing up myself in a small town, I can totally see this story playing how just how it is written as everyone knows each other, and they are tight-knit, but then there is still division and tension among factions.  There is so much to this book, mystery, love, historical details, and a portrayal of everyday living.  I highly recommend this be on your to read list for 2018!

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Review Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Monday, January 8, 2018

"Oath Of Honor"

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Lynette Eason is back with another new series and "Oath of Honor" is an excellent start and introduction to the series and the characters.  The Blue Justice series is focusing on the St. John family; this family who's members are all involved in public service jobs - Chief of Police, police officer, FBI, surgeon, lawyer, just to name a few.  "Oath of Honor" focuses on Izzy St. John, police officer and one of the 6 St. John siblings.  Izzy goes along with her partner on an undercover stake-out; however things do not turn out good at all as her partner is shot and Izzy believes at first that her eyes must be playing tricks on her as she thinks her twin brother was there on the scene and he shot the guy who was prepared to shoot at her.  However, why would he be there and with the "bad guys."  As Izzy is dealing with the emotional aftermath from this and trying to contact her brother, she finds herself being targeted and must fight for her life. 
I absolutely loved this book, I read it so quickly as I could not stop reading and now I have to wait until July for book #2.  At first, I had to keep turning back a few pages to remind myself of who was who as there were so many characters introduced, but as I read I kept them straight and just found myself wanting to know more about all of the St. John family members.  The family is all busy with their work and they are all involved in stressful jobs, but still find that time to connect as a family and I love the interactions between the siblings.  The storyline has so many twists and turns and I was kept guessing as to the whats and whys of the list that was found and who the masterminds were behind the attacks.  Lynette has done a great job at introducing the family and sharing Izzy's story and now I am eager to read more about the rest of the family! 

*Thanks to the Revell Reads Blogger Review Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Thursday, January 4, 2018

"The Ladies of Ivy Cottage"

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First of all, the cover on Julie Klassen's latest novel is amazing, absolutely beautiful!  And the story inside is wonderful as well!  "The Ladies of Ivy Cottage" is the continuation of the story of three women, Jane, Mercy and Rachel, three friends whom have grown up together and still close trying to figure out life together.  All three women are trying to find answers and closure from the past and are hopeful for their futures, while finding their own way in life.  There is mystery and romance sprinkled in as well adding to the story and their lives.  I absolutely loved being drawn into the story, into this village and into the ladies' lives once more. Julie does a great job with really developing the characters and sharing bits and pieces of their stories, separately while also their lives together.  I am looking forward to book #3 in the series and once again spending time in Ivy Hill. 

*Thanks to the Bethany House Blogger Review Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

"The Christmas Star"

Image result for the christmas star robert tate millerRobert Tate Miller's latest Christmas novel, "The Christmas Star: a love story," is such a sweet and real story highlighting love, loss, forgiveness, healing and hope.  Paul despises Christmas due to the recent losses in his life, his former perfect life, that is perfect in his eyes.  However, he was lacking a very important piece, a true relationship with God.  When Paul finds himself in despair he turns to other vices to help. However, this Christmas is going to be different when Paul is at his lowest and finds himself in the company of some unlikely companions and on a journey that will prove to be the very thing that he needs. 
This story flows so nicely as the reader is introduced to Paul and his life and taken on this journey with him.  This also highlights the birth of Jesus and the journey that the shepherds were on to meet this new King, giving another perspective and look at the reason for the Christmas season. This was one of my favorite books that I read this past Christmas season; however it is one to be enjoyed anytime of the year as we each can use the healing and hope that are portrayed in this book and in Paul's life.  I highly recommend this book and this will be one that I will reread each Christmas season. 
*Thanks to the author for the complimentary copy of this book.*

Tuesday, January 2, 2018

new devotional for the year!

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"the Psalms & Proverbs Devotional for Women" is a great new devotional book.  I waited to begin this with the start of the year as it is a collection of 366 devotions, so my goal is to stick with this and end 2018/begin 2019 with completing the last few readings and pages in this.  The readings are short each day with just a little more than a page on average for each day.  Starting with day 1, the readings begin in Psalms 1 and work through Psalms and Proverbs with a specific set of verses and a specific topic for each day.  Then there is a reflection thought or question(s) included with ample space to write in and answer.  There is also a prayer included each day.  I love the layout of this book and the idea of really focusing on these two books.  With this being geared toward women, the readings are applicable and to the point.  The book has a nice look and feel to it as well and it is easy to take with me and do my daily reading wherever I choose to. I highly recommend this. 

*Thanks to the BHBloggers/Lifeway Bloggers Program for the complimentary copy of this book.*

finding a balance in living

This is a perfect book to kick off a new year with, a time of new beginnings, a time to refresh and restart.  Life can be overwhelming and just feel cluttered and draining, physically and emotionally, and this book addresses all this as it helps each of us to find that right balance in our lives.  This is a cute hardcover edition that is nice looking to have laying out as a coffee table style book, but it is also a smaller size that is nice to stick in a purse to read while waiting somewhere or to sit down and read with a mug of coffee.  It is also divided nicely into sections to address each and every area of life.  There is a chapter focusing on work, at home, the environment, and just life in general.  This concept of Lagom is intriguing and I love the information included about it and then this style of living can be incorporated in so many areas of living.  There are pictures interspersed throughout the book that are beautiful and just add to the book. 
To read more about this book, go here!

To read about the author, go here!

 "I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review."