Tuesday, October 1, 2013

Learning To Love - A Review

I'll admit it straight out. I pre judged this woman and this book. I had seen a few things about her ministry and well, it just seemed fake. And superficial. 

And then, I read this book. And realized, wow. She's just a person with a serious heart for God. And is she ever about just letting God use her and her life. There is definitely something to learn from Heidi and Rolland. And yes, they are just people and not perfect, but boy do they love Jesus. And because they love Jesus, they love others and they DO something about it. 

I feel like I could already use a re-read of this book to really learn more about love and Jesus and how to make it real in your life - EVERY day. It doesn't have to be some country in Africa. The dramatic love of God can be lived out anywhere and this is a good reminder of that. Ok, I've talked myself into a re-read. 

I received a free copy of this book from the publisher, Chosen Books. The review is 100% my own. 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Rebellious Heart - A Review

Rebellious Heart by Jody Hedlund is quite an interesting story. It is her take on the relationship of John and Abigail Adams. She was great at developing the story to include factual incidents from their lives. It covers a period of history that is just fascinating - early America before the Revolution. Makes you wonder about the time and what you would have done. There were so many controversial issues and things happening in the world at that time, and yet the world was much smaller because of the communication. The TIME that things took is so interesting. The characters she wrote are very realistic and relatable as they work through murders, runaway servants, and smuggling. 

I would really recommend this book. There is much to be learned in the story as well, little bits of wisdom that apply to our lives currently. I think I would look more into the real facts behind the Adams' relationship because of this story. You won't be disappointed. 

I was sent a copy of this book by Bethany House. The review is 100% my opinion. 

Thursday, August 15, 2013

A Most Peculiar Circumstance - A Review

Perhaps you'll remember, I had a wonderful run in with Jen Turano last year. The woman is brilliant. FOR REAL. This is her second in the series, and AM I THANKFUL THERE IS A SERIES. She's funny, witty, working in political issues of the day with humor and completely fascinating plots. I love her characters, her books, her descriptions, her WRITING.

Bottom line: buy this book. A Most Peculiar Circumstance is a read, re-read - 'let's hang onto it because I just like it that much ok and no you can't borrow it kind of book'. 

What is it about? Well, it still is dealing with the dynamics of male/female relationships of the time period and women's voting rights. Basically, it's a fun snippet of life back then with a really great story attached. Opposites eventually attract, and it's not your typical 'man saves woman' story. Love reigns and you just can't wait for the sequel. It's just a fun read that you don't want to put down. 

My copy was given to me by Bethany House, but the review is 100% my own opinion. 

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Sweet Sanctuary - A Review

Now, I happen to LOVE stories set the 1940s. Throw me a World War Two book and I'm in heaven. So maybe my expectations were a bit high for this book. I was really looking forward to it. Sweet Sanctuary is a cute story that really details love and forgiveness that God asks of us. That is a really great part of the book. However, it didn't really capture my interest in the way I hoped. Maybe it just moved slow for me or whatnot, but I would definitely put this at a library read, not a purchase. The story is along the lines of inheriting a friend's child and a whole host of problems that result from that. It does feel like a peek back into an entirely different America, which is quite fun. 

Bethany House sent me a free copy of this book, but the review is 100% my opinion.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Firefly Island - A Review

Firefly Island is a lovely family story that crosses the country with the turns and twists of new married life. It was a refreshing change from most 'Christian' fiction I've read in recent years. Lisa Wingate writes a compelling plot, with fun characters, but with a solid dose of reality. 

As always, I hate to give away too much in a book review, but we shall dabble a bit in the plot. Mallory  Hale is the main character, and she is whisked away to Texas from Washington, DC, after falling in love with a man on the move. After moving, mysterious and odd things happen and Mallory learns more and more about her new 'small town' neighbors. What she finds is shocking and leads to some pretty big decisions that will impact her new family.

This is the only book I've read from Lisa, but I will certainly look for more. I love the way the story was set and developed and that is was just good clean fiction. This is a book to get! 

Bethany House sent me a free copy of this book, but the review is 100% my opinion.

Friday, May 31, 2013

Almost Amish - A Review

Almost Amish by Kathryn Cushman is an interesting read. I specifically DO NOT read the genre of Amish fiction that parades around in Christian bookstores, Wal-mart, and the like. So no worries that my thoughts are tainted with all of that rolling around in my head. Ok, maybe you were not worried, but I needed you to know that right up front. 

So. I'm the kind of person who occasionally or all the time shuns as much technology as I can. I don't fill out my entire Facebook profile, and if I wasn't making actual money on Facebook I would delete it. That's just who I am. I'm just annoyed that I have even DISCUSSED Facebook here. 

Moving on.

But, due to my personal tendencies, I've dreamed of cutting out of the 21st Century and going back to 'the good old days'. That is what this book is about. The characters are extended family, going to spend a summer living like the Amish for a TV reality show. Now, I've actually seen a show like this before, and so it wasn't too surprising. It was neat to read about and see characters determine what is really important in your life. The book offered good perspectives, and very balanced. It pointed out the good hard work that is required for the 'simple' life back in the day. Whew, and is it ever work. I mean, I knew that, but ugh for all the cooking and how you have to think about food SO MUCH.

What really created interesting depth was the perspective and back story to the reality TV show. It is obvious to me that programs push certain story lines and TRY to create tension between people. This book really touched on that angle and the differences between Hollywood culture and regular people. 

I would recommend this book. I found it to be a good, easy read, but not because it lacked the ability to make you think. The story really opened up well and I enjoyed that it was not a book based on a love story of some kind. I think this would be the kind of book you'd buy, read, and then give it away so the story is shared. It has a good message and makes you think about how you live. 

Bethany House sent me a free copy of this book, but the review is 100% my opinion.

Saturday, March 16, 2013

Love in a Broken Vessel - A Review

I was sent a copy of Love In A Broken Vessel to review. My reaction was strong. This is a rewrite of one of those crazy Bible stories - the one where God tells the prophet to marry a prostitute. The story becomes alive in this book, and if you read it, you won't be the same.

I know I'm sensitive. I know that, but the level of pain in this book is almost more than you can bear. I still cannot grasp the horror and abject devastation lived through these words. To think God asked this of someone....it just shakes up my entire notion of life and how to understand God. It shows me that MY ways are not His ways - MY thoughts are certainly NOT His. The sadness breaks your heart twenty times over and more if you have ever been greatly betrayed in a relationship. Can you do this? Will you do this? You find yourself wondering and asking these things. Will you love people when God asks? Do you even consider that God may be asking something of you or are you already choosing the easy out the first chance you get?

You may think that a reaction like that is not good, that I don't want you to read this, but that isn't the case. Whew. It's hard, I know that, but I've never been someone to run from the hard when I know it should be done. And, this book should be read. I feel like I understand God better. I feel like I understand love better. And, sure, you want to cry more, but it is worth it. I would buy this book and read and re-read. I'm looking into Mesu Andrews' other books because of it.

I was given a copy of this book for free from Revell. The review is 100% my opinion. This book is available March 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.