Monday, August 30, 2010

Karen Witemeyer's Tailor-Made Bride ~ Reviewed

Tailor-Made Bride,
Karen Witemeyer
Paperback: 348 pages
Publisher: Bethany House (June 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0764207555


Jericho "J.T." Tucker wants nothing to do with Coventry, Texas's new dressmaker. He's all too familiar with her kind--shallow women more devoted to fashion than true beauty. Yet, except for her well-tailored clothing, this seamstress is not at all what he expected.

Hannah Richards is confounded by the man who runs the livery. The unsmiling fellow riles her with his arrogant assumptions and gruff manner while at the same time stirring her heart with unexpected acts of kindness. Which side of Jericho Tucker reflects the real man?

When Hannah decides to help Jericho's sister catch a beau--leading to uproarious consequences for the whole town--will Jericho and Hannah find a way to bridge the gap between them?


Readers of historical romance will be delighted to discover a new author who writes like a seasoned veteran of the genre yet with a freshness that is uniquely her own. Karen Witemeyer has penned a novel as fun and feisty as the cover suggests, with a innovative heroine determined to make the most of the blessings bestowed upon her and a hero who is as surly as he is good looking. With sparkling dialogue and a thought provoking battle of wits over vanity versus beauty, Karen is set to make a splash amongst readers who enjoy Deeanne Gist, Mary Connealy and Robin Lee Hatcher. Karen has won me over and I'll certainly be on the lookout for Head in the Clouds, come this October.

Reviewed by: Rel Mollet

Bonus Review:

First time novel for Karen Witemeyer has earned a permanent space on my keeper shelf and a guaranteed to-buy list selection for future titles such as Head in the Clouds. The Bethany House cover artists out did themselves on these covers and the story within in skilled to match right on par. I was pleased and tickled to giggles by the humor and personality within the characters in the pages of A Tailor-Made Bride. I am so glad to have discovered Karen's writing and cannot wait patiently enough for more books to come. In all of the books that I read I have a little less than a handful of favorite authors and Karen has just added herself to that list. With a similar whit and seriousness of issues and drama as Mary Connealy and Vickie McDonough I cannot elaborate enough how much I enjoyed the page by page turn of events in the lives of the people within these pages.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Friday, August 27, 2010

Ann Shorey's The Promise of Morning ~ Reviewed

The Promise of Morning, At Home in Beldon Grove Series #2
Ann Shorey
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 336
Vendor: Revell
Publication Date: 2010
ISBN: 0800733339


Ellie Craig grieves the loss of three infant children, and when long-hidden secrets are brought to light, she must find a way to contact the family of her long-lost father. Meanwhile her husband, Matthew, faces controversy in his church and competition from a new arrival in Beldon Grove, who claims to be both a minister and the son of the town's founder. Will Matthew find the courage to reclaim his church? And will his unexpected travel companion help Ellie's heart mend?


Someone may have told you how the first book in this series The Edge of Light was depressing. It was and in starting The Promise of Morning you would think this would be depressing through out as well, but that is not the case. This novel starts with a heart breaking fact of life and continues into a scenario where with modern day medical knowledge we know what is happening, but ignorance hurts. Yet the story continues on. By the book blurb it looks like this is a story about Ellie, and it is, but even more so this is a story about Matthew.

Through both Ellie and Matthew a story is told that is very real, raw, and emotional and something to growth with and from and continue on. In the situations that take place my own mind says I would just give up, but watching the characters and watching how life does continue and seeing how God orchestrates things for the end all is incredible to imagine. This is a book that tells a story about grief, but offers so much healing as well. I highly recommend this book. Though it is the second in a series, you could very well read this one alone. Now, eagerly I look forward to the next novel to come from author Ann Shorey.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ann Shorey's The Edge of Light ~ Reviewed

The Edge of Light
Ann Shorey
Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 352
Vendor: Revell
Publication Date: 2008
ISBN: 0800733304


It is the summer of 1838 in St. Lawrenceville, Missouri, and Molly McGarvie's life is about to change forever. When her beloved Samuel succumbs to cholera, Molly is heartbroken but determined to take care of herself and her children. But when Samuel's unscrupulous brother takes over the family business and leaves Molly to fend for herself, she knows she must head out on her own. It is a dangerous journey and Molly has to leave her old life behind. Somehow she must find a way to make a living, keep her family together, and fend off some over-eager suitors.


Much in the same way as Siri Mitchell write Regency novels that are incredibly depressing, but historically accurate and visual new novelist Ann Shorey does the same on the American Frontier. Through out my experience in reading this novel I was sad and heartbroken with the characters as one thing happened after another. It reminded me of childhood playing of the game Oregon Trail as you could do nothing but let life take things away. At first I was curious what could possibly happen that would ...more Much in the same way as Siri Mitchell write Regency novels that are incredibly depressing, but historically accurate and visual new novelist Ann Shorey does the same on the American Frontier. Through out my experience in reading this novel I was sad and heartbroken with the characters as one thing happened after another. It reminded me of childhood playing of the game Oregon Trail as you could do nothing but let life take things away. At first I was curious what could possibly happen that would be good and cause my heart to smile and there were a few things here and there.

Ann's writing is incredibly good and the details of weaving were vivid and educational. I would definitely recommend her books and I look forward to reading The Promise of Morning. But I would warn you that this is not a lighthearted romance, but a heavy one. I think it is realistic, but difficult not to be pessimistic. One thing I had real trouble with was that the mother hardly paid any attention to her older daughter always pushing her out of the way and telling her to just be still and quiet. Overall, the book was an interesting experience.

Do not get me wrong, it is a good book, just depressing a bit. But it does en-capture "the edge of light" where you can hold on to hope and not let go.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Richard Mabry's Medical Error ~ Reviewed

Medical Error (Prescription for Trouble Series)
Richard Mabry MD
Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Abingdon Press (July 12, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1426710003


Dr. Anna McIntyre’s life was going along just fine until someone else started living it. Her patient died because of an identity mix-up; her medical career is in jeopardy because of forged prescriptions; and her credit is in ruins. She thought things couldn’t get worse, but that was before she opened the envelope and saw a positive HIV test with her name on it.

Her allies are two men who are also competing for her affection. Dr. Nick Valentine is a cynic who carries a load of guilt. Attorney Ross Donovan is a recovering alcoholic. The deeper Anna digs to discover who’s behind the identity thefts the higher the stakes. Finally, when her life is on the line, Anna finds that her determination to clear her name might have been a prescription for trouble.


Richard Mabry returns with his unique brand of medical suspense and a determined heroine with Medical Error, following his solid and engaging debut novel, Code Blue. Richard is clearly honing his craft as he has created a more complex mystery with a few surprise twists along the way. His compelling characters wrestle with feelings, frustrations and regrets in an authentic manner and the final outcome of Anna's dilemma and her romantic triangle remain in doubt until the final pages. Medical terminology is expertly used and will satisfy the knowledgeable reader without confusing the rest of us! Intriguing and absorbing, Medical Error highlights the contemporary crime of identity theft, provides a satisfying mystery with a dash of romance, making it a most recommended read.

Reviewed by: Rel Mollet

Bonus Review:

I’m so thrilled to have received a review copy of such suspenseful medical thriller that reminded me of the movie, The Net with Sandra Bullock, but taken to a whole new level.

This book opens with Dr. Ana McIntyre performing emergency surgery on Eric Hatley. It was descriptive and I wasn’t sure where the author was leading the reader. But then the pace picks up and Dr. Anna McIntryre discovers her credit cards have been maxed out and it wasn’t by her. This was not a great way to end her horrible day!

On the same day Anna discovers someone has stolen her identity she also finds out she’s is being sued for malpractice. Could things get worse? Dare she ask the question? She had to find out who stole her identity—the police weren’t making her a priority. “Whatever happened to innocent until proven guilty? It all seemed unfair?” in Anna’s way of thinking, she wanted answers and she wanted them now.

Why had things gone so wrong, all Dr. Anna McIntryre wanted to do was be a surgeon and help people, she hadn’t signed up for all this. I quickly felt for Anna and her situation. The author’s casts of characters are colorful, likable and believable. I was quickly drawn in by how the author takes the reader to places they haven’t gone before. Dr. Richard Mabry’s experience in hospitals and the system makes this medical mystery scary believable and has you look at the ER, Dr.s and the hospital in a whole new way.

This author shows the non-glamorous side of being a Dr. along with all the red tape they go through and how it can be horrific at times. Dr.’s don’t have lots of time and information to go on when a patient arrives in the ER unconscious! They have to depend on their medical experience, information in the computer of their patience and what they are told about the situation the patience got into before they arrived..

This Richard Mabry did a great job of pacing of the events that unfold; allowing me to experience this story to the fullest. Richard’s plots twists and turns definitely kept me up late wanting to know what happened next. I enjoyed and was surprised at the wit and humor used by this author. He had masterfully woven well timed humor into the suspenseful parts of his book. I didn’t expect to laugh out-loud while reading a medical mystery. I loved it.

Dr. Anna McIntrye is forced to take a look at her life and tries to figure out what she holds dear. She worked so much she hadn’t stopped long enough to have this thought before. I was intrigued with her journey through this process and beyond. I thoroughly enjoyed every page of this medical suspense thriller with heart. It’s made me want to check out Richards’ first book Code Blue. I’m also looking forward to reading the next book in this series “Diagnosis Death, “ This is one author I’ll be keeping an eye out for, you will too.

Reviewed by: Nora St. Laurent
The Book Club Network

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Nancy Moser's Masquerade ~ Reviewed

By Nancy Moser
Published by Bethany House
ISBN# 978-0-7642-0751-8
400 Pages

Back Cover:

1886, New York City: Charlotte Gleason, a rich heiress from England, escapes a family crisis by traveling to America in order to marry the even wealthier Conrad Tremaine. She soon decides that an arranged marriage is not for her and persuades her maid, Dora, to take her place. What begins as the whim of a spoiled rich girl wanting adventure becomes a test of survival amid poverty beyond Charlotte's blackest nightmares. As for Dora, she lives a fairy tale complete with gowns, jewels, and lavish mansions--yet is tormented by guilt and the presence of another love that will not die. Will their masquerade be discovered? Will one of them have second thoughts? There is no guarantee the switch will work. It's a risk. It's the chance of a lifetime.


I’m very thankful for a review copy of this novel. Masquerade depicts pitfalls and a promise of people in the 1800’s who are starting afresh in the land of milk and honey--America. Nancy Moser states that she had a blast writing this book and I had just as much fun reading it. She said this book could be a mixture of movies such as The Prince and The Pauper, Titanic, The Age of Innocence and Far and Away; I agree it was a combination of them all and a little more.

Similar to these movies, Nancy lets the reader experience every part of life in the late 1800's with just the right mix of the sights, sounds, smells, social structures and the hopes and dreams of so many on their way to the promised land. I felt as if I were experiencing America through their eyes for the very first time - up close and personal. So many people were heading to America to live the dream others talked about.

This novel is set in England in 1886. Charlotte Gleason is a wealthy spoiled young girl who wants to marry for love; period the end. She’s about to refuse to marry a man arranged for her by her parents, when she discovers this union is their one shot at saving them from being financially ruined. Suddenly her situation begins to look bleak, and taking a boat to America doesn’t sound so bad after all. While on the boat to America, Charlotte comes up with a plan that would involve her maid, Dora Connors. Dora Connors listens to Charlotte’s plan - they’ve been friends for years and Dora doesn’t think it’s the best idea. How could she think this would work? She would go along with the masquerade, against her better judgment. Charlotte was quite stubborn so Dora agrees. The adventure begins when they get off the boat and switch places in America.

Never in her wildest dreams did Charlotte Gleason think life could change so quickly. One day she is living in luxury and the next in ruins, expected to pay her own way for everything. Dora Connors never expected the fiancé’s house to be so elegant and the man she was to wed so likable. Could she live like this the rest of her life? It wouldn’t take much convincing! Can Charlotte Gleason make her way in this foreign land? You’ll have to read this tale to find out. It was fun to read about America in it’s infancy and watch these two girls try to pull off the impossible! I also enjoyed the historical facts and gowns the author shares in the 'author notes' at the end. I now understand why wealthy women needed help with their clothes. By the looks of them, the young lady could hardly move around in them. I really enjoyed learning more about the late 1800's while reading this book.

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network

Monday, August 23, 2010

Allison Pittman's For Time and Eternity ~ Reviewed

For Time and Eternity (Sister Wife)
Allison Pittman
Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers (August 4, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1414335962


All Camilla Deardon knows of the Mormons camping nearby is the songs she hears floating on the breeze. Then she meets one of them—a young man named Nathan Fox. Never did she imagine he would be so handsome, so charming, especially after Mama and Papa’s warnings to stay away. Though she knows she should obey her parents, Camilla can’t refuse her heart. But even Nathan’s promises cannot prepare her for what she will face in Utah.


I read Allison Pittman's novels with a bias. I expect her novels to make me think, and to transport me into a story that makes me completely unaware of my actual surroundings. She has ably met those expectations in For Time and Eternity.

The story begins in Iowa, my hometown, actually, which was kind of fun. But it was a very different Iowa, set during the Mormon exodus toward Utah. The story doesn't cover the journey and the hardships of the trail that one might expect. Instead it is the story of a young Christian girl, who, against her parents wishes, runs away with the young Mormon man whose eyes speak of promise and passion.

Pittman handles some controversial issues with grace. The history of the Mormon church is one that is tarnished, as is the history of Christianity, and let me just put it out there...all of humanity. Power, greed, lust, fervor, passion, pride; all things that seem to drive, divide and destroy even the best of intentions and situations. And beneath that not-so-subtle mix, is the underlying story of For Time and Eternity; man vs. God and the attempt to define Him, understand Him and become like Him.

In the midst of that epic struggle of man and God is the age old struggle of man and woman with a twist....a woman who is asked, expected and encouraged to share the husband she loves with all her heart, with another. Pittman delivers there as well. I read much of For Time and Eternity with my heart in my throat and tears in my eyes.

Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer

Friday, August 20, 2010

Don Brown's The Malacca Conspiracy ~ Reviewed

The Malacca Conspiracy
By Don Brown
Published by Zondervan
ISBN# 978-0-310-27215-1
349 Pages

Back Cover:

American president Mack Williams has an international crisis on his hands. The Malaysian seaport of Malacca is the focus of a deadly terrorist plot to attack civilian oil tankers, assassinate the Indonesian president and finance a nuclear attack on American cities. Can Navy JAG officers Zack Brewer and Diane Cocernian foil the conspiracy before disaster strikes?

To Read first chapter click HERE.


On the back cover it says, “Hang on...and hold your breath!" - they weren’t kidding!! Action happens from the very first chapter and doesn’t stop until the end. I’m grateful to have received a review copy of a book that shows evil trying to take over and the people fighting back the darkness, for the sake of freedom and safety for all.

It took me a few chapters to get into the rhythm of this author's writing technique. Don Brown’s style keeps the reader engaged and has them on track by noting the location a scene taking place. For example, it might say 'Rasa Sentosa Resort, Sentosa Island, Singapore 11:16a.m.', which helps make sure the reader’s mind is set for the situation ahead.

This author masterfully weaves together a chilling, action adventure story told from a panorama of different points of view. I was astounded at how Don Brown wrote all these scenes from different parts of the world and kept it all on track. It was like watching a movie and having it smoothly pan from one event to the next, connecting them all seamlessly. I loved it!

This author shows evil being unleashed on this planet by people who would do unimaginable things to themselves, and others to achieve their goal! Most of these deeds are unbelievable to our way of thinking and were quite disturbing to read. Don Brown served five years in the U.S. Navy and “gained an exceptional vantage point of both Navy and the inner workings of 'inside-the-beltway' political operations as an action officer assigned to the Pentagon.” This explains his insider point of view and how he took the reader behind closed doors in meetings with the President and the Security Council, while planning the next military action.

Don lays out a terrorist attack, a surprise to many, and a global nightmare for all. What does it look like when a mad man takes power and has several nuclear war heads at his disposal, then starts making demands.

Don Brown brings back two of his favorite characters from The Navy Justice series, Zack Brewer and Diane Colcernian, to help catch the person masterminding these attacks at sea. Zack and Diane are sent to the front lines to gather clues in helping catch the evil doer and uncover where the next attack would take place.

Robert Molster – N.Y. Merchantile exchange, is contacted as an adviser for any unusual activity at the stock exchange market that might shed light on the group behind these brutal attacks. Robert’s documents show how one sect made $40 billion overnight. “They could buy a ton of nuclear weapons for forty billion…if somebody was willing to guess is for that kind of money, they could find a seller!” It was scary and fascinating how the stock market could be manipulated and used to fund terrorist attacks.

Also, it was intriguing, and a little scary, to read how information is gathered and told to the president and his counsel, so they can come up with a counter-attack. This author has a believer in the White House.

Mark Williams is president and the bible verse he is standing on is in Philippians, “anxious about nothing, but in all things bring your petitions and requests to God. And the peace of God, that passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.”

He addresses the nation and says, “Islamo-fascists may have temporarily bruised us, evil cannot, and shall not, ever quench the heart and the spirit of America. We are grateful to God almighty that we still live as a nation.”

Don Brown has a gift for getting into the skin of whoever’s point of view he’s writing from. I was drawn into all the scenes he wrote about, even he minor ones. It’s amazing how our military has to be on alert 24/7, trained to look at things differently than you and I do. I also understood why things are kept top secret and current info isn’t broadcast on the nightly news. There would be so much panic and people would be paranoid of everyone around them, it would create such havoc. It was unnerving how many years the evil ones planned their attacks. And, sleepers are activated by a phone call to perform the evil task at hand.

This novel was one thrill ride full of action, suspense, drama and some romance. It was definitely entertaining and scary to think how many of these things could happen in current time. It also reminded me to pray more for our military, the people that run our country and for our President. This was a book that made you think and appreciate our government and our military, and to get on our knees to pray for our nation. I can’t wait to read another book by this master storyteller.

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network

Bonus Review:

The Malacca Conspiracy is my first novel experience with author Don Brown, but after reading this and getting snippets of previous books including the Navy Justice Series, I'm very intrigued and want more. This novel was real and engaging. It was nerve wracking and page turning. I was terrified and excited all in the same breath. I truly enjoyed this novel and want more like it.

While reading this book I felt like I was getting a geography lesson about parts of the world I never really thought about. I learned about some issues of stocks and bonds and the market world as well as some military terms. In part it reminds me of reading a Tom Morrisey novel (Danger Close, Pirate Hunter). For me it was a great read, following up on Jerry Jenkins' The Last Operative.

I wonder if my navy wife sister will need to borrow it...

*Thanks to Zondervan for providing a copy for review
through the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance.*

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Kathi Macias's No Greater Love ~ Reviewed

No Greater Love
By Kathi Macias
Published by New Hope Publishers
ISBN# 978-1-59669-277-0
315 Pages

Back Cover:

Forbidden romance, an unlikely martyr and an even more unlikely hero. Orphaned four years earlier when their parents, active in the African National Congress (ANC) movement against apartheid, were murdered—16-year-old Chioma and her 15-year-old brother Masozi now live and work on an Afrikaner family’s farm. When Chioma and Andrew, the farm owner’s son, find themselves attracted to one another, tragedy revisits their lives. Chioma escapes to join an ANC rebel band in her effort to survive and gain revenge for her family and culture. When cultures clash in life-or-death struggles, Chioma must choose between violence and revenge—or forgiveness and selfless love.

Loosely based on historical events and set near Pretoria, South Africa, in the violent upheaval prior to ANC leader Nelson Mandela’s release from prison in 1990 and his ascendance to the presidency of South Africa, this story of forbidden romance produces an unlikely martyr who is replaced by one even more unlikely.


I’m so thankful to have received a review copy of this most electrifying, moving historical novel by Kathi Macias. I was hooked from the very first line “1989 was not a good year to fall in love-at least not in South Africa, and certainly not with a white man.”

This author had my attention and kept it until the very end. I’m not a history buff and appreciated the fact that Kathi Macias showed the affect of the Apartheid from both a white and black perspective. I was clueless about the political system that governed South Africa from 1948-1994. The author says “Apartheid was a tragedy of humanity, a mockery of divinity, a fallacy of purity—in black and white. It was a subjugation of the majority at the hands of the minority.”

This author does an amazing job of developing multifaceted characters and situations that are so believable. I cared, and stayed up late reading to find out their fate. Chioma, 16-yr-old orphan, along with her brother, Masozi, worked on a farm as slaves. Trouble-seeking men disturb Chioma and Masozi as they are resting at the side of the road, before making the trek home to the farm. Andrew, the farm owner’s son, stops to see what’s up. That’s when all heck breaks loose. No one expected trouble. But, the ANC rebel band will not stop their taunting until they have had their fun.

Andrew’s dad preaches every week and is a strong supporter of the Apartheid. Andrew doesn’t believe in the Apartheid. How could he when the bible teaches that God loves us ALL? God doesn’t pick a favorite and say that He only loves them. No, the bible says, “He loves us ALL, and died for everyone, in order to have everlasting life.” There’s the rub. Didn’t his father see that? He couldn’t preach love on Sunday and enforce the Apartheid the rest of the week. Andrew couldn’t live like this. God was moving in his heart and opening his eyes.

Chioma has to decide if she believes the white man’s God. How could she when she watched her mother and father die at the hands of white men? She had to stay strong for the cause - it’s her only hope. Then after an unexpected uprising where Andrew, a white man who came to her and her brothers side, Chioma begins to look at life a little different.

This was one powerful story that showed the situation from both sides and had the characters come to the realization something had to change. They couldn’t do life as usual anymore. They were tired and had had enough! But how could one person change the world and what would that look like? It was scary. It was almost more comfortable for Chioma to not make waves. But the feelings they had inside where killing both Chioma and Andrew. They started to look at change in a whole new light. The Light of Jesus! He is the Light of the world. This is the first book in the Extreme Devotion Series. I can’t wait to read the next book, More than Conquerors, and you won't either!

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Cathy Bryant's Texas Road ~ Reviewed

By Cathy Bryant
Published by: Word Vessel Press
287 Pages

Back Cover:

City gal Dani Davis just wants to find a place to call home. Miller's Creek, Texas, with its country charm and quirky citizens seems like the perfect place to start over. Perfect, that is, except for the cowboy who gives her a ride into town...Dani secretly finances renovations to downtown Miller's Creek, but malicious rumors force her to choose between keeping her involvement a secret and the home for which she's always longed. Then the discovery of an age-old secret propel her down a road she never expected to travel. Steve Miller is determined to save his dying hometown. When vandalism jeopardizes the Miller's Creek restoration project, he can't help but suspect Dani, whose strange behavior has become fodder for local gossips. Will Steve and Dani be able to call a truce for a higher cause, and in the process help Dani understand the true meaning of home?


I’m so thankful for the review copy of Cathy Bryant’s heart warming, debut novel. I’ve never been to Texas but I’d love to go to Miller’s Creek, a quaint little town, with its friendly neighbors, beauty, innocence and fun. It reminded me of the town of Mayberry in the Andy Griffith T.V. shows. It was a quieter, simpler life back then. The main character is Dani, raised in the city, visits her Mama Beth, who reminded me of Aunt May, on the Andy Griffith show. Everyone in this little town loved her and called her Mama Beth. Dani felt drawn to this town and for a place she could call home.

She didn’t expect to run out of gas upon entering this town. A man offers her a ride. City girls just don’t get into a car with a stranger. Steve tries to assure Dani he is just interested in helping her get to where she is going...nothing more. He’s already sized Dani up to be a spoiled brat who’s over-dressed and he’s unimpressed. He can’t wait to deliver her to her destination.

The next day she wakes up in her Aunt Beth’s house to find Steve there, the man who gave her a ride. Was this man following her? Dani’s aunt informs her he is the Mayor. Great she’s off to a swell start in this small town.

Dani has an ache in her heart to find a place called home. In that search, she realizes she has a hole in her heart and a need to fill this emptiness inside. She discovers this hole can’t be filled with a place, but instead it can be filled with a person not of this world. Her Aunt Beth’s been praying for her and she agrees to go to church. It’s the least she could do for her Aunt. Church isn’t what she thought it would be like. That’s when the fun begins.

Cathy Bryant pens a fun, cozy, spirited romance story, that I enjoyed. I loved her characters, the town and its people. I found myself wanting to spend time in this cozy little town and I’d especially want to hang out with Mama Beth. She was a hoot! I enjoyed everyone minute of this delightful story. I can’t want to see what Cathy writes next.

Reviewed by: Nora St. Laurent
The Book Club Network

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Miralee Ferrell's Love Finds You in Bridal Veil, Oregon ~ Reviewed

Love Finds You in Bridal Veil, Oregon [Paperback]
Miralee Ferrell
Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Summerside Press (January 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1935416634


Amidst a backdrop of thievery and murder in historic Bridal Veil, Oregon, a schoolteacher is torn between the memories of a distant love and the man who could be her future. Margaret Garvey had given her heart to Nathaniel, but he left town six years before. Now she’s giving love another chance, but her decision to build a new life with Andrew is shaken when Nathaniel steams back into Bridal Veil on a riverboat to work at the nearby sawmill. When disaster strikes the town and threatens the welfare of its citizens, Margaret will be faced with the most important choice of her life.

When you are looking for a book if you want adventure, romance, suspense and to go through a whirlwind of emotions and indecision on your reader's opinions of a character... well then this is the book for you!

Through the story of Love Finds You in Bridal Veil, Oregon we are introduced to our protagonist Margaret (great name right? *wink*). Four years ago her father arranged things so that her betrothed though she changed her mind about him and left and she was convinced he left her knowing that she loved him. In these four long years she became angry with God and allowed a wedge to form as she just knew that God had told her he would take care of their relationship. Then along comes a man seemly interested in her, but he arrived simply because her father asked him to and as she starts to become curious, it seems that her betrothed has finally returned for her. Through out the book as I reader I did not know which one to love and which one to hate. I'm all about true love and only one true love. Miralee really had me going one way, then cheering another, then being frustrated at a certain character's behavior and wanting redemption there. I truly applaud the author here, because I had no idea how it would turn out and it could not have been better. (The only thing that I want now is a side line sequel finishing the other guys story... because I think there is potential there.)

Also within the pages of this book we have a different smaller story of strength in a twelve year old girl running from a painful past and protecting the unexpected. Every page had me hoping and praying for Samantha to get where she needed to be and I could not guess what her future should be. In the end, it was very appropriate and the kind of ending I crave and love.

Over all I thoroughly enjoyed this story, and as this was my second historical adventure from the Summerside Press Love Finds You in... series I am sold and cannot wait to get my hands on others. Also this was my first experience reading a story from author Miralee Ferrell and you better believe it will not be my last.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Friday, August 13, 2010

Amber Miller Stockton's Liberty's Promise ~ Reviewed

Liberty's Promise (Romancing America) [Paperback]
Amber Miller Stockton
Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Barbour Publishing, Inc.; 1st edition (March 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1602607990


Relive the birth of a new country as three women battle to know who they can entrust their hearts. Raelene is all alone, but is there peace in following the wishes of her dead father? Elanna is intelligent for her young age, but will her love for an older man turn into passing fancy when his integrity is questioned? Margret’s loyalties are torn when the colonists rebel, for how can a relationship with a British soldier built on deceptions survive? Will each woman find her place of freedom to embrace her faith and trust her heart to love?


So very excited about this! I am not a fan of mass market paperback, but I love Amber Miller Stockton (formerly published as Amber Miller) and her creative imagination that she shares in her stories. So when I found out that her Delaware Dawning or Delaware Brides series (depending on who you talk to) from Heartsong Presents was going to be published in one **Trade paperback Volume... OH HAPPY DAY!!! If you have not already read the stories as they were, read them now and treasure them in this ado...more So very excited about this! I am not a fan of mass market paperback, but I love Amber Miller Stockton (formerly published as Amber Miller) and her creative imagination that she shares in her stories. So when I found out that her Delaware Dawning or Delaware Brides series (depending on who you talk to) from Heartsong Presents was going to be published in one Trade paperback Volume... OH HAPPY DAY!!! If you have not already read the stories as they were, read them now and treasure them in this adorable one volume with a gorgeous cover. I am so excited about the Romancing America line of fiction from Barbour Books, so very excited. *grin*

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Promises, Promises
Amber Miller has a great work in this book. The story is just what it needs to be. Starting out with a tragedy that allows one to get their back up and spout all their reasons for not trusting in the Lord and to go through a process of healing and really seeing what the Lord is trying to do for them is so hard to put into words, and she did it. Reading this story of Raelene makes you take the time to look at what is going on in your own life. For me it makes me think about the comparison to English life of Jane Austen-types and the farmers in the early colonies. So many times I gripe about what strife I have, but in the end really none of it does compare to what God provides. Like Gustaf, God sits by silently waiting for us to open our eyes while we continually break his heart over and over again. This story had everything that it needed, and I'm so glad that I crossed over it in my life.

Quills & Promises
*sigh* Is it not fabulous when as a reader, you turn the last page of a book and the first thing you do is sigh in complete contentment. Well that is my reaction and I am certain many others experience with the second Promises book from Amber Miller "Quills & Promises". It tells the story of the daughter of the characters from the first book, "Promises, Promises" and is complete on it's own as a stand alone as well. I cannot wait to read more from this author.

The story took me into the time of the French & Indiana war, and I was able to meet people and learn personalities and experiences that I have not had before. It was great. One of my favorite movies is "The Patriot" and even though that was the Revolutionary War, this story reminded me of it, but it was better. In this story we have to characters that write letters through out the course of war and you find out things about the war as well as personalities. The best part that makes the story in the book better than that movie, is the devotion to God and even though the desire for retaliation is there, the act is not. That is something that is so hard, but so full of Christ's love as an example.

I highly recommend the stories from Amber Miller to anyone craving a little romance in a historical setting.

Deceptive Promises
Deceptive Promises is probably my favorite of the three Delaware Brides Series. Maybe it because authors get better with time or just deeper into you heart. Maybe it is because the Revolutionary War is my favorite period of American history. Maybe it is because I cannot imagine falling in love and then being separated for months on end and want to know how the characters can possibly survive it! Either way, this book is fabulous and I loved it.

Margret is not a half bad character name either, if you know what I mean. *grin* The only negative thing I have to say at all is that I do not like the cover. Their position seems so unnatural and she almost looks uncomfortable and as if she wants to run. Yet again, maybe that is just me. Plus I am not a fan of mass markets, but anything from this author Amber Miller, soon to be published as Amber Stockton is worth it.

This is a story that delves into history and tells details of some of my favorite historical players. This is almost a history lesson with some romance thrown in. To really understand some of the other characters I would suggest reading the entire trilogy, but it is very capable of being read alone as well, and highly recommended as a novel as well.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Debbie Macomber's Hannah's List ~ Reviewed

Hannah's List
Debbie Macomber
ISBN-13: 9781426854682
Pub. Date: 04/27/2010

Book Description:

On the anniversary of his beloved wife’s death, Dr. Michael Everett receives a letter Hannah had written him.

In it she reminds him of her love and makes one final request. An impossible request — I want you to marry again. She tells him he shouldn’t spend the years he has left grieving her. And to that end she’s chosen three women she asks him to consider.
First on Hannah’s list is her cousin, Winter Adams, a trained chef who owns a café on Seattle’s Blossom Street. The second is Leanne Lancaster, Hannah’s oncology nurse. Michael knows them both. But the third name is one he’s not familiar with — Macy Roth.

Each of these three women has her own heartache, her own private grief. More than a year earlier, Winter broke off her relationship with another chef. Leanne is divorced from a man who defrauded the hospital for which she works. And Macy lacks family of her own, the family she craves, but she’s a rescuer of strays, human and animal. Macy is energetic, artistic, eccentric — and couldn’t be more different from

During the months that follow, he spends time with Winter, Leanne and Macy, learning more about each of them…and about himself. Learning what Hannah already knew. He’s a man who needs the completeness only love can offer. And Hannah’s list leads him to the woman who can help him find it.


This is my first Debbie Macomber novel and not my last. It seems for some reason I always hesitate to buy the novels that most people are crazy over. It is my understanding that just her name will sell a book before synopsis or title is available. I would not say that this is my favorite author, but she was definitely enjoyable for a general market fiction. Coming as a reader of various genres I generally like my fiction to be tasteful and for the most part this was. There were about five sexual sentences in the whole book and if they were removed I think it would not have changed the plot or emotions of the scenes one bit but would have made it more tasteful for my opinion.

Hannah's List is a story of a widower and a letter that his wife wrote him urging him to move forward in life. Personally this is a tough subject for me as I'm fairly set in the one and only rule, but the author really does show a point and paints a fair story. I think that this was an incredibly touching read as you get to know the full handful of characters. Easily this could be a great and touching drama film. I do highly recommend this read. I am so glad that I was able to read it, and I look forward to adding more Debbie Macomber books to my shelf in the future.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Kristen Heitzmann's Indivisible ~ Reviewed

By Kristen Heitzmann
Published by WaterBrook Press
ISBN# 978-1-4000-7309-2
336 Pages

Back Cover:

Battling his own personal demons, Police Chief Jonah Westfall knows the dark side of life and has committed himself to eradicating it. When a pair of raccoons are found mutilated in Redford, Colorado, Jonah investigates the gruesome act, knowing the strange event could escalate and destroy the tranquility of his small mountain town. With a rising drug threat and never-ending conflict with Tia Manning, a formidable childhood friend with whom he has more than a passing history, Jonah fights for answers—and his fragile sobriety.

But he can’t penetrate every wound or secret—especially one fueled by a love and guilt teetering on madness.

From best-selling author Kristen Heitzmann comes a spellbinding tale of severed connections and the consequences of life lived alone.


Upon reading Indivisible, I can see why Kristen Heitzmann has become a best-selling author. Her characters, for the most part, were real and dynamic, her plot was engaging, and the writing captivating.

The story begins by diving into the lives of four very different individuals who share a common bond: emotional baggage that hinders their ability to experience joy and authentic, intimate relationships with others. Jonah, a tough yet sensitive second generation police officer, fights against his inner demons and self-loathing. Raised by an alcoholic, physically and psychologically abusive father, his tainted self-image creates a self-fulfilling prophesy when it comes to relationships. It takes the trust of a coyote—yep, you read right, a coyote--to break through his outer shell and show him that perhaps he is lovable after all.

And then there’s Tia, poor, tender-hearted (in a defensive, angry sort of way) Tia, Jonah’s one true love. Living down a scandal that resulted in familial ostracism, she struggles with demons of her own. Hiding out in a self-induced prison, she plays the perfect daughter card in order to make up for past sins, her ultimate sacrifice being denial of true love. She longs for Jonah and hates him at the same time, blaming him for her past. But when things take a turn for the worst and Jonah finally gives up, her heart breaks over what has been lost. Is it too late to undo the damage, or has her one chance at true love come and gone?

Tia’s best, and perhaps only, friend, Piper, has her own emotional garbage slung over her shoulder, although she seems to be farther along on the road to emotional recovery than the rest. Now if she could just allow God into the picture, things would really start moving forward. But real faith often comes during times of desperation and it takes a perilous situation for her to make that final turn.

And then there’s the most emotionally-enslaved character of all, Liz, the town’s veterinarian. Bound forever by guilt and a twisted sense of intimacy, she longs for love but doesn’t quite understand what it is, or how to attain it. At least, not without shattering the one relationship she does have with her previously conjoined twin.

Even though this book is complicated, and at times, slightly quirky, the author did a great job of weaving multiple sub-plots into one cohesive story. Initially, I found the many points of views presented to be distracting—all four within the first few pages. But as the story progressed, I quickly empathized with each one. That being said, Tia and Jonah were my favorites. Overall, the writing was very creative, with frequent analogies and metaphors. Although at times, like when a character was said to hold his arms to his chest like an eagling just out of the egg, the imagery was more cumbersome than helpful. However, as the book progressed the writing became more natural and the descriptions less forced.

The demons that haunted most of the characters were very accurately portrayed. In Jonah, we understood the deep cravings he had for alcoholism and in Tia, we felt her deep insecurities and need for unconditional love and acceptance. The outcome presented for one of the minor characters, a young man suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder, seemed to miss the mark, but to expand further would ruin a good portion of the story for you.

Overall, a great book with a hint of Christianity.

Reviewed by: Jennifer Slattery

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Steven James's The Bishop~ Reviewed

By: Steven James
Published by:Revell
523 Pages

Back Cover:

FBI Special Agent Patrick Bowers's cutting-edge 21st-century geospatial investigative techniques and impeccable logic have helped him track some of the country's most grisly killers. But those skills are pushed to the limit in this new installment of the highly-acclaimed, award-winning The Bowers Files series. This time it's a congressman's daughter who is found dead even as her killers launch a spree of perfect murders in the Northeast. With nothing to link the crimes to each other, Agent Bowers faces his most difficult case yet--even as his personal life begins to crumble around him.


The Pawn, the Rook, the Knight and now the Bishop, Steven James has written another gripping tale, adding to the Patrick Bower’s legacy. I literally could not put it down.

Steven James (a man with two first names) has a way of using words to draw us into the story and the characters like few writers do. The sun doesn’t rise, it “cut through my window.”

His imagery and technical expertise make me forget I am reading a book. I feel like I am living in the story. He writes in first person for Patrick Bowers and third person for everyone else, but there is no doubt that you are in the mind of each character every second.

His books are about an FBI Agent who is an expert in Geo Profiling. Patrick pursues serial killers and is the best at what he does. His relationships are a constant struggle. He is a recent widow, trying to be a father to his step daughter, who is dealing with her mother’s death. I will say no more than this about his life’s challenges, other than to say that the books can be intense. Understand that there are serial killers, victims and crime scenes involved.

The worst part of the books for me, is the last part because I am so wrapped up in the story and the pure suspense, that I will not sleep again until I am finished.

One other aspect I must mention about Steven’s books; the intelligence of the discussions/ truth seeking/ debates that take place in them. He introduces concepts and ideas and discusses them in a way that keeps the reader’s full attention. There are many “I didn’t know that, hey honey, did you know that…?” moments in his books. Without encroaching on this I will mention that the issue of humanism and morals are explored in depth in the series. There is never a resolution, (yet anyway) just questions and exploration and in this sense I think of Steven’s writing style as “mind candy” for the reader.

If you like suspense, and can handle the intensity go get this book! BUT if you haven’t read the Pawn, the Rook and the Knight first, well break out the piggy bank and get them all!

I pity you though, because your calendar is going to suffer until you finish these, once you wade in, you won’t be able to stop. Now I have to figure out how I will make it until next year for the Queen… oh and I just hope that 2012 will be the year of the King?

Reviewed by; Fred St.Laurent
The Book Club Network

Monday, August 09, 2010

Jenny B. Jones's So Over My Head ~ Reviewed

So Over My Head
Jenny B. Jones
Paperback: 336 pages
Publisher: Thomas Nelson (May 4, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1595545433

Book Description:

Newly single, stalked by a killer, and in desperate need of some chic clown shoes--Bella is one skinny mocha frapp away from total meltdown.

When the Fritz Family Carnival makes its annual appearance in Truman, Bella's keen reporter instincts tell her the bright lights hide more than they reveal. Her suspicions are confirmed when one of the stars is murdered. Though the police make an immediate arrest, Bella doubts this case is quite that simple.

She needs her crime-solving boyfriend, Luke, more than ever. Problem is, his ex-girlfriend has moved back to town, giving Bella some murderous thoughts of her own. Then again, there's no time for a relationship crisis when Bella's doing her best to derail her father's wedding and stay one step ahead of a killer.

Is God sending her a message in all of this madness? With a murderer on the loose and her boyfriend's ex on the prowl, this undercover clown has never had more to juggle--or more to risk.


Jenny B. Jones's books read like one of those e-mail buddies. You know. The ones who can make you laugh and snort coffee, even in the midst of a really rotten Monday morning. The buddies who make inappropriate hilarious, even when you know you shouldn't laugh. And then, that same buddy, sometimes throw out a spiritual truth or deep statement that makes you stop and consider something entirely different about a situation.

So Over My Head is all of these rolled into one drama-infused, teen-romance-rich, murder-mystery riddled read fueled by a cast of international, costume-wearing, high-flying characters. Ruthie the unicycle ballerina is my favorite character in the book and I'm pretty sure she needs her own series.

Reviewed by: Kelly Klepfer

Bonus Review:

I couldn’t wait for this review copy to arrive at my front door so I could read about Bella Kirkwood and her adventures in Oklahoma. So Over My Head starts two weeks after the Prom ended in the last book. Bella prides herself as being a Nancy Drew kind of gal. Fellow students seek her talents when they have a mystery to solve.

I couldn’t help but get the feeling I was watching a Scooby-doo episode as I read about Bella Kirkwood and Luke chase down possible suspects in a murder mystery at the circus. Bella was at the circus writing an article for the school newspaper when she discovered a body with a knife in it.

Luke, the editor of the school newspaper, tells Bella to stop writing the circus article. It’s just too dangerous. But, since Bella cooled things with Luke on the personal level and it was back to business as usual, she didn’t think she should take his advice. This was her story and she was not going to be scooped out of it.

Bella’s stepdad, Jake, has hit the big time on the wrestling circuit and goes on the road to follow his dream. Bella’s mom is unhappy and puts her dreams on hold so her husband can chase his. Meanwhile, Bella’s dad has found true love; Bella thinks otherwise. She will use her super sleuth skills to get to the bottom of her dad’s fiancé. There was more to this woman than her dad could see. There was more than love on that woman’s mind and Bella would prove it.

Jenny hits another home run with the third and final installment of the A Charmed Life series. She has created an over the top believable story with Bella tracking town leads to uncover the murder mystery before it’s too late. Treat yourself to one of Jenny’s books. She creates a fun, witty and tender story that will warm your heart. Get ready for another amusing adventure with Bella Kirkwood. You’ll be entertained, giggle and learn something that will catch you by surprise. I highly recommend this book for young readers, but I can also recommend it for all ages. I can’t wait to read the next book Jenny B. Jones writes - no matter what audience she is targeting. I know that it will be worth my time and money!

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
The Book Club Network

Friday, August 06, 2010

Lori Copeland's A Kiss for Cade ~ Reviewed

A Kiss for Cade, Western Sky Series #2
By: Lori Copeland
Number of Pages: 275
Vendor: Harvest House Publishers
Publication Date: 2010
ISBN-13: 9780736927635


Famous bounty hunter Cade Kolby is forced off the trail to decide the fate of his late sister's orphaned children. He's not just returning to his hometown and nieces and nephews, but also to the fiery redhead he loved and left 17 years ago.

The last person Zoe Bradshaw wants to see is Cade. She tries to be cool and polite, even as the attraction between them flares up again. Only this time, Zoe is determined to not let Cade get close to her heart. But the townsfolk have other ideas. They want to see the little orphans with a mother and a father, and they form a plan that includes the possibility of a kiss...


The romance that makes you squirm at the characters and scream at their blind spots for love makes me smile when I read it in a book. Much in the way that I enjoy the comedy and romance of Mary Connealy, I really enjoyed this story from Lori Copeland. I have read some of her other new books such as those from Avon Inspire and enjoy them. Yet this series from Harvest House is even better.

A Kiss for Cade is the second book in The Western Sky Series, but the first one for me, and now I...more The romance that makes you squirm at the characters and scream at their blind spots for love makes me smile when I read it in a book. Much in the way that I enjoy the comedy and romance of Mary Connealy, I really enjoyed this story from Lori Copeland. I have read some of her other new books such as those from Avon Inspire and enjoy them. Yet this series from Harvest House is even better.

A Kiss for Cade is the second book in The Western Sky Series, but the first one for me, and now I'll have to go find a copy of Outlaw's Bride because I enjoyed this one so much. Cade is not sure what his future will be, but with the death of his sister and forced return to the people of his past things are even more confusing. This is a story that brings out the pain and pressure of Zoe's early years, but realizes after fighting it that God is in control and will make things work out in his own time.

The thrill of a bounty hunter's life with a show down on the streets with the madness of the town taking over one's romantic future is an amusing tale that will entertain you and cause inward sighs. Lori Copeland did well in this novel. It is a great one to enjoy around the romance of Valentine's Day or anytime. Snuggled in your favorite reading spot, you'll be swept away into a western romance that will keep you feeling the love long after you turned the last page.

More please.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Thursday, August 05, 2010

Carla Capshaw's The Duke's Redemption ~ Reviewed

The Duke's Redemption (Love Inspired Historical)
Carla Capshaw
Mass Market Paperback: 288 pages
Publisher: Harlequin (January 12, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0373828284


He came to the colonies for one reason: revenge. Drake Amberly, Duke of Hawk Haven, won't leave South Carolina until he's unmasked the colonial spy who killed his brother. Yet the more he sees of spirited Elise Cooper, the more he's moved by the happiness she brings him...never suspecting the dangerous secret she hides.

Her faith drives Elise to spy for the rebels, dreaming only of freedom for her homeland. Then she meets Drake, and learns that love could be hers, as well. When his pursuit of "The Fox" brings him dangerously close to the truth, she'll risk everything to prove that love and forgiveness are all they need.


I dare say that I could quite feel my heart beating out of my chest at times through out this adventure. The revolutionary war era is my favorite historical time period and I hardly find a novel entwined in that time that I enjoy, but that was not the case with this novel. I very much so enjoyed the experience of reading into the lives of Duke Drake Amberly and his true love, the espionage Fox for the Patriots Elise Cooper.

The things that one would do to save the life of her sister ...more I dare say that I could quite feel my heart beating out of my chest at times through out this adventure. The revolutionary war era is my favorite historical time period and I hardly find a novel entwined in that time that I enjoy, but that was not the case with this novel. I very much so enjoyed the experience of reading into the lives of Duke Drake Amberly and his true love, the espionage Fox for the Patriots Elise Cooper.

The things that one would do to save the life of her sister meet with the things that one would do to receive vengeance for the life of his brother and they are stalled with the question of is their love strong enough to endure the past? Knowing from the beginning that they would fall in love, it was difficult not being able to turn the pages fast enough. Such a complicated situation, it is hard to even suggest what the outcome could be.

Author Carla Capshaw kept my attention wrapped around each page and continuing chapter and I am so glad to have entered her into my favorite author list. I enjoyed this novel and I will definitely be on the look out for more.

Reviewed by: Margaret Chind

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

Bryan M. Litfin's The Sword ~ Reviewed

The Sword
By: Bryan M. Litfin
Published by Crossway Publishers
ISBN# 978-143350925-4
412 Pages

Back Cover:

Four hundred years after a deadly virus and nuclear war destroy the modern world, the kingdom of Chiveis emerges---where the people live a medieval lifestyle with little knowledge of the "ancient" world. What will happen when a young army scout stumbles across a strange book called the Bible---in a place where Christianity is long forgotten!


“Twenty-four-hundredth year after Jesus Christ, a strange situation had emerged. The world of cars and guns and computers had become, once more, a world of horses and swords and scrolls. History had been rewound and was playing itself out all over again.

In this ancient-future world, one particular people united themselves under a king and called their realm Chivels. The Chieisis also had their own religion: they worshiped four main gods under the guidance of a high priestess.”

Bryan M. Litfin creates a world four hundred years after a virus and nuclear war destroy it. It’s a fascinating look at a “what if” scenario - what if life as we’ve come to know it ends? Bryan’s characters gripped my heart and definitely made me think about God’s word in a whole new way. I was quickly drawn into this suspenseful narrative filled with action, adventure and a compelling storyline that kept me engaged and caring for the characters and their situation until the end.

Teo and Ana find a treasure, called the Sacred Writings. Teo has heard of these ancient writings and knows how to translate them into his tongue. These writings become a light that shines into the hearts and minds of the people he reads them to. God starts His work where two or more are gathered in His name. This is powerful stuff. God (who they call Deu) becomes more real to them than any of the four God’s they’ve grown up with. It's amazing and scary to them.

“Maurice Teo’s mentor says, 'Deu is the all-creator. He’s not a God to be manipulated by rituals and good deeds and token offerings. He makes the plans; your place is to heed them…Teo, I think you have to let Deu be the God He is, not the God you want Him to be.'”

Bryan shows the dark side of the high priestess, religion and how people get caught in the powers of darkness. The Sword is the first in a trilogy. Bryan concludes his book with you wanting to learn more about this colorful cast of characters and wondering about their next adventure. The sequel is scheduled to be released April 2011.

Reviewed by: Nora St.Laurent
ACFW Book Club Coordinator

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

Lisa Samson's Resurrection in May ~ Reviewed

Resurrection in May
By Lisa Samson
Published by Thomas Nelson, Aug 3, 2010
ISBN 978-1-59554-544-2


May Seymour graduated from college with the world at her feet and no idea what to do with it. A mission trip to Rwanda brought her a sense of purpose in loving others. So when the genocide began she chose to remain in the village, which was subsequently slaughtered. Only May survived.

May journeyed to heal on the farm of Claudius Borne, as sweet, innocent old man who understood plants and animals far better than people.

Years later, having not stepped a foot off Claudius' farm, May learns an old college flame, now a death-row inmate, is refusing to appeal his sentence. Can she convince Eli Campbell to grab hold of life once again? Their surprising friendship turns the tables as Eli slowly begins to pull May from her cloistered existence. With the help of Eli, their tiny town, and ultimately a renewal of faith, May comes to life once again.


Resurrection in May is a gripping saga and one I couldn't put down. Rich in characterization and description, Lisa Samson is a master storyteller—one of the best. It's slightly different than her usual literary style, but Resurrection in May retains the intense beauty Samson is known for in her writing. A must read. Novel Journey and I give it a high recommendation.

Reviewed by: Ane Mulligan
Editor, Novel Journey

Monday, August 02, 2010

ACFW August Book Releases

1. Angel Song by Sheila Walsh and Kathryn Cushman-- General Fiction from Thomas Nelson. Angels eagerly watch over Anne Fletcher's every move. She just doesn't know it yet.

2. Assignment: Bodyguard; CHAIM series, Book Four by Lenora Worth -- A Suspense/Mystery/Thriller from Steeple Hill. Fast-paced romantic suspense.

3. Be Not Afraid; The Samantha Cain Series Book 1 by Deborah Lynne -- A Suspense/Mystery/Thriller from OakTara Publishing. Samantha Cain witnesses a serial killer in action and is now his next target.

4. Beautiful Bandit by Loree Lough -- An historical from Whitaker House. An old-fashioned "Wild West" tale that puts trust, faith, family loyalty, and love to the ultimate test.

5. Detours; Tabor Heights Series by Michelle L. Levigne -- A Romance from Desert Breeze. It's a long and winding road from "some enchanted evening" to the first date, let alone the promise of a lifetime.

6. Exposing Amber by Elizabeth Goddard -- A Romance from Barbour Heartsong. Amber McKinsey interns under museum director Brandon Selman and finds a kindred spirit who loves the science of God's creation, but they must confront their pasts to have a future.

7. Fear No Evil by Robin Caroll -- A Suspense/Mystery/Thriller from B&H. A new policeman must protect a young social worker from big-city gangs making their evil way down south.

8. Hometown Proposal; Book 2 in Kellerville Series by Merrillee Whren -- A Romance from Steeple Hill. Finding family, community and love in one small town.

9. Hope's Promise; The Sierra Chronicles, Book 2 by Tammy Barley -- A Romance from Whitaker House. While trying to prove their unconditional love for each other, the Bennetts must defend against attacks, deeply rooted doubts, and an unknown force that could destroy all they hold dear.

10. Killing Time by K. Dawn Byrd -- A Suspense/Mystery/Thriller from Desert Breeze. "I was framed!" Drew Stone has heard it before, so why is he tempted to believe Mindy when she tells him the same thing?

11. Lost Island Smugglers; The Sam Cooper Adventure Series - Book # 1 by Max Anderson -- A Suspense/Mystery/Thriller from Port Yonder Press. Three boys, a monster storm, Lost Island, and smugglers?

12. Love Remains; The Matchmakers, Book 1 by Kaye Dacus -- A Romance from Barbour. Circumstances pulled them apart fourteen years ago--will two young professionals allow themselves to discover if love remains?

13. Mission of Hope by Allie Pleiter -- Romance from Love Inspired Historical. The gallant, romantic sequel to Pleiter's San Francisco historical, "Masked by Moonlight," featuring an unlikely hero helping the city heal from it's massive earthquake.

14. Never Without Hope; Sacred Vows Book 1 by Michelle Sutton -- Women's Fiction from Sword of the Spirit Publishing. Succumbing to temptation often decimates marriages, but with God, restoration and healing is within reach.

15. Sarah's Christmas Miracle by Mary Ellis -- A Romance from Harvest House. A Plain and loving story of hope and redemption, one that will be a welcome addition to the joy of the Christmas season.

16. Surrender The Heart; Surrender to Destiny, Book 1 by MaryLu Tyndall -- An Historical from Barbour. A lady, desperate to save her family and a man, desperate to please his, are caught in the brink of a war that could change the course of history forever.

17. The Bridge of Peace; Ada's House Series by Cindy Woodsmall -- A Romance from Waterbrook. Love alone isn’t enough to overcome the obstacles between a man and a woman.

18. The Doctor's Blessing; #2 in The Brides of Amish Country by Patricia Davids -- A Romance from Steeple Hill. A nurse-midwife to the Amish and the new doctor clash over her home deliveries.

19. Twilight Seranade; Book 3 by Tracie Peterson -- An Historical from Bethany. Britta Lindquist must decide whether to settle for a peaceful future or fight for the love of her life.

20. Vanishing Act by Liz Johnson -- A Romance from Love Inspired. Eighteen months ago, Nora James vanished, but she's about to be discovered by a ruthless assassin ... and an FBI agent afraid of risking his heart.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Judy Christie's Goodness Gracious Green ~ Reviewed

Goodness Gracious Green
by Judy Christie
Published by Abingdon Press
ISBN 978-1-4267-0055-2


The charming and uncertain journalist is delighted with her decision to keep The Green News-Item and excited about the possibility of romance with her good-looking catfish farmer/coach neighbor—and the growth of her fresh faith and friendships.

Her second year in Green has scarcely been rung in, though, before Lois is wrung out. The former owners of the paper want it back. The mayor's dog bites her on the face. A series of fires threaten Lois. And while her friends blossom, Lois feels wilted.


Sometimes the sequel to good book leaves the reader disappointed. Not so with Goodness Gracious Green, sequel to Gone to Green. I loved it and hope there's a third book in this series. Judy Christie writes such charming characters that I was drawn into their lives. I want to visit Green and meet the mayor and Lois's other friends.

If you haven't read Gone to Green, grab a copy, and while you're at it, get Goodness Gracious Green. These are a perfect summer read. Novel Journey and I give it a high recommendation.

Reviewed by: Ane Mulligan
Editor, Novel Journey
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