Tuesday, March 31, 2015

A HEART'S DISGUISE (Journey of the Heart Series, Book One) by Colleen Coble, Thomas Nelson Publishing

Sarah Montgomery waits for Rand Campbell, the man whom she loves dearly to return from the war. When he does not return, she pledges herself to another man named Ben Croftner who holds a secret.

Later, Sarah learns Rand is alive and that Ben knew all along causing the break in their relationship. Rand reveals to Sarah the orders received from the army to post at Fort Laramie in Wyoming and asks her to move with him as husband and wife. Sarah refuses to go because no one will be left to care for her father who is ill, which leaves Rand no choice but to leave Sarah behind.

Sarah lost her true love, got him back and lost him again leaving her with an engraved coin “Rand and Sarah” to cherish as a keepsake for their sweet and bitter goodbye ending.

A Heart’s Disguise is a short story in the beginning of a six-part series entitled “Journey of the Heart” by Colleen Coble, which is set at the end of the Civil War. The beginning of this series is full of suspense as you wait to see what Sarah’s fate will be when her long lost love, Rand, leaves her behind to care for her sick father when his army orders moves him to Fort Laramie, Wyoming.

I enjoyed this short read and waiting for the next installment to arrive to learn what happens to Sarah since Rand left for Fort Laramie. I recommend to historical romance fiction lovers and Civil War buffs for an easy and enjoyable read on a cozy afternoon or evening.

I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishing through the Litfuse Publicity Group reviewer program in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission Guidelines.

Thursday, March 26, 2015

THE PROMISE OF PALM GROVE by Shelley Shepard Gray, Avon Inspire

Amish bride-to-be Leona is on vacation in Florida away from fiancĂ© Edmond who is overbearing and believing a woman’s place is to obey the instructions of her husband not allowing the wife to follow her own dreams. The more time Leona spends with Edmond she realizes that being his wife is not quite what she wants because of his views regarding what married life should be.

Leona meets a young man named Zachary and notices the difference between him and Edmond. Being with Zachary brings happiness to Leona resulting in doubtful thoughts to the marriage plans with Edmond already in place. Trying to decide which path to choose, Leona’s friends try to convince her that Edmond is the best choice. How will Leona decide which man to choose in sharing the rest of her future?

The Promise of Palm Grove is book one in the Amish Brides of Pinecraft fictional series that will show one woman’s view of marriage. I enjoyed reading Leona’s dilemma of making a promise to marry an overbearing man while encountering another man with an opposite personality than that of her betrothed. I recommend to readers and book lovers of Christian fiction for a delightful story of love, dilemmas, and making the right choices for your life.

I received this book free from Avon Inspire, an imprint of Harper Collins through the Litfuse Publicity reviewer program in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission Guidelines.

About the book: 

The Promise of Palm Grove (Avon Inspire, January 2015)

Leona must decide: Does she follow the path set out before her? Or take a chance with only the promise of what could be to guide her?

A young Amish woman finds herself torn between the man she's pledged to wed and the man her heart desires in this heartwarming story of chance, duty, and choice in the face of love---the first volume in the beloved New York Times bestselling author's new Amish Brides of Pinecraft series.

Amish bride-to-be Leona is thrilled to be in Florida, on a mini-vacation in the pretty town of Pinecraft. Her girlfriends think she's happy because she's away from the stress of wedding planning. They have no idea that Leona's real joy is in being away from her fiancé.

Edmund is a good man, and will make a decent husband . . . just not for Leona. The more time she spends with him and his overbearing ways, the less she wants to be his wife. Her cousins are sure Edmund is the right man for her---and their certainty makes Leona begin to doubt herself. But when a chance encounter with a wayward cat brings her face-to-face with a handsome, fun-loving Amish man named Zachary Kauffman, Leona's faced with two vastly different futures.
Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1aQJuw2 

About the author: 

Shelley Shepard Gray
 is a two-time New York Times bestseller, a two-time USA Today bestseller, a finalist for the American Christian Fiction Writers prestigious Carol Award, and a two-time Holt Medallion winner. She lives in Southern Ohio, where she writes full-time, bakes too much, and can often be found walking her dachshunds on her town's bike trail.

Find Shelley online: website

Monday, March 23, 2015

LIFE UNSTUCK: Finding PEACE with Your Past, PURPOSE in Your Present, PASSION for Your Future by Pat Layton, Revell Publishing

“For the woman
who secretly suspects
there is nothing more
but desperately dreams there is.”
Pat Layton  
Dedication Page, Life Unstuck

Life Unstuck relates Book of Psalms verses to everyday life and the issues women are confronted with on a daily basis. A Garden of Personality Test aides in finding your true personality using the different traits entitled Bumblebee (Powerful Personality-Choleric), Butterfly (People Personality-Sanguine), Ladybug (Peaceful Personality-Phlegmatic), and Hummingbird (Pondering Personality-Melancholy). Layton uses several truths to start you on the way to becoming guilt free such as “Unstuck Truth #7: Sometimes we have to go back to get ahead” citing that our past weighs us down causing the inability to expect anything good.  In using Habakkuk 1:5, the way it is referred to is taken out of context goodness versus destruction.

Life Unstuck is a nice approach to learning how to become unstuck in your thinking, the way you live, and giving all praise to God for everything. The book has additional online resources at http://life-unstuck.com/ that includes a downloadable study guide for each of the twenty-four chapters and the “Desires of an Unstuck Woman” life balance wheel. Life Unstuck is a good resource for individual and group settings strengthening their walk with God and as a great gifting opportunity.

I received this book free from Revell Books in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission Guidelines.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

WHEN LIES CRUMBLE by Alan Cupp, Henery Press

Jasper Bedford owns West Lake Property and Development, a very prosperous real estate development company. Today his daughter Cindy is waiting for Tyler to arrive for their wedding ceremony growing anxious as the final hour approaches. Jasper learns that Tyler is a no-show and vows to find him no matter what it takes, especially after learning Tyler broke into his home and stole money while everyone was at the wedding.

Cindy hires Private Investigator Carter Mays to find Tyler after discovering he was using her as part of his sinister plan to escape with stolen bundles of money from her father. Through Cindy’s devastation, she learns that Jasper is not the father whom she has grown to love and decides to confront him and her mother. How will Cindy face her father with the information she knows without placing them all in danger and completely shredding the family to pieces?

Alan Cupp has written a good mystery and crime drama that should not be at the bottom of any reading list.  This is the first book in a series for Private Investigator Carter Mays and I cannot wait to read the second novel in this collection. When Lies Crumble is full of mystery, suspense, twists and turns as read about the Bedford’s and their real estate fortune. I recommend to all amateur sleuths to get ready for a good read on a cozy afternoon or evening.

I received this book free from Henery Press through the Net Galley reviewer program in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission Guidelines.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

YOU'RE LOVED NO MATTER WHAT by Holley Gerth, Revell Publishing

Here’s the scandalous truth: we can be loved, accepted, happy, and less stressed without being perfect.”
-      Holley Gerth

Holley Gerth discusses with biblical scripture how the “struggle with the pressure to be perfect” can affect a woman’s self-inflicted list of high expectations of being unrealistically perfect in all area of life. This includes the need to have the following: complete control, absolute knowledge, rightful glory, self-sustaining love, and a secure identity.

Each chapter includes questions or sentences to complete with your own thoughts on the subject material covered. Chapter 6: Daring to Be Who You Already Are gave me a lesson on who I really am without knowing that I was missing a few characteristics about myself.

Struggling with self-perfection also brings into light how you perceive others around you and “letting go of the perfection other people’ learning to exted God’s grace instead, reaffirming the grace God extends to us. This devotional also includes a study guide for individual and group study looking deeper into perfection learning how to release that need. I recommend to everyone wanting information to release the need for perfection and believe this is a great guide for study groups.

I received this book from Revell Publishers in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission Guidelines.

Monday, March 9, 2015

THE DEEP END by Julie Mulhern, Henery Press

Ellison Wolford Russell takes a swim early every morning at the country club before sunrise, but this particular morning she is not alone because there is a dead body in the pool with her who happens to be Madeline Harper, someone she has known for a long time and one of her husband’s dominatrix mistresses.  All Ellison can think about is how her overpowering mother will react to the news that she has found a body floating in the country club pool and whether Henry is involved.

Everyone knows all the dirt on every member of the exclusive country club and believes Ellison may be responsible for Madeline’s demise. As Ellison is questioned by the police, she believes that Henry had nothing to do with the murder and sets out on her own to find the killer while placing her life in danger.

Ellison begins her investigation and discovers letters in Henry’s home safe that contain comprising photographs of country club members including that of her father. Now the tables are turning in the direction of Henry as a blackmailing suspect who has disappeared since Madeline’s murder.  How will Ellison overcome the overbearing mother and demeaning husband while searching for the killer in a mysterious murder?

The Deep End is an enjoyable murder mystery for anyone who loves crime drama mysteries with a little comical wit. I am looking forward to the next installment in The Country Club Murders series hoping it will be just as good as the first.

I received this book free from Henery Press through the Net Galley reviewer program in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission Guidelines.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

DAMAGED GOODS: New Perspectives on Christian Purity by Dianna E. Anderson, Faith Works/Center Street, Jericho Books

“Current purity movements and theological strictures tell us that making this journey means we must master and control our flesh, subdue it…Instead of our fighting against our own bodies, holiness needs to be about integration and moderation.”

Dianna E. Anderson discusses Christian purity questioning the teaching principles that are based upon the bible and how that affects the person who fights to control their flesh by not having sex before marriage.

In Damaged Goods, there is discussion on the church teaching modern relaxed issues concerning areas of sex before marriage as Christians struggle with the flesh and the spirit within. There is also mention of the feeling of guilt once having sex outside marriage which blame is put upon the church and its teachings, but in my opinion, the actual problem is that guilt feelings comes from the flesh fighting with the spirit knowing the difference between right and wrong according to God’s Word.

You cannot mask wrong and say it is okay to test the waters of sex before marriage by exploring your sexuality without facing consequences. If you believe in God’s Word, you will fight the flesh and not the spirit that guides you in the right direction. This book has plenty of voiced concerns and brings good points to the forefront and all I can do is recommend that you read for yourself and see how you feel about the message given.

 I leave you with this verse: Romans 8:1, Authorized King James Version

“There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus,
who walk not after the flesh, but after the Spirit.”

I received this book free from Faith Words/Center Street through the Net Galley reviewer program in exchange for an honest opinion in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission.