Sunday, August 21, 2016

Book Review-One of the Few By Jason B. Ladd

One of the Few
A Marine Fighter Pilot’s Reconnaissance
of the Christian Worldview
By:  Jason B. Ladd
Publisher:  Boone Shepherd

About the Book:
A US Marine fighter pilot explores life’s important questions as he prepares for combat, searches for truth and wages spiritual warfare during his mission to become a better husband and father.  As a child Jason grows up in a loving military family but does not have much spiritual guidance.  He draws from his life experiences and training as a fighter pilot to lose his spiritual apathy and find true salvation.

My Review:
Before I begin my review of “One of the Few”, let me say without a doubt it is the most insightful book (except the Bible), I have ever read.  It gives concrete evidence of the truths of Jesus Christ.  Be prepared…this book may cause thought-provoking emotions that will cause you to read the footnotes for a better understanding and it will not be a book you can whiz right through!  You might even find yourself in prayer because you found a picture of yourself in the same doubt and misconceptions as Mr. Ladd on his way to finding real peace in Jesus Christ. 

I really don’t know where to begin as this book touches on almost every question a non-believer could ask and then out of left center field cautioning the Christian about the pitfalls of drinking to pornography and how to look for the hidden messages in seemingly innocent TV programs we watch right down to children’s cartoons (just to name a few).   He even explains the difference between killing during war-time and actual murder.  In every situation he has scripture to back up his statements and in many instances scientific findings that parallel the Bible.  Mr. Ladd has taken the events of his life, to share his journey on the quest to find real peace in Jesus!

Mr. Ladd explains that as we search for the truth for God, the only thing that will hinder us from accepting word of God is our pride.  He also doesn’t shrink away from telling Christians it is time to quit being apathetic and stand up for what is right. 

In about the twenty-fourth chapter of his book I came across a passage that truly spoke to my heart.  It brought tears to my eyes and peace to my heart to be reminded again of what God means to me and the price he paid so that I might have eternal salvation.  With Mr. Ladd’s permission to use this quote,  I would like to add that passage to my review…”In him, I will put my trust.  On him, I will depend.  Through him, I will persevere.  For him, I have meaning, purpose and destiny.  By him, I see my own brokenness.  Out of him, comes forgiveness and love.  I am a follower of Jesus Christ—owned by the Father and purchased with blood of his Son.”  (end of quote).

This book is not only for the non-believer, looking for peace, but also a reminder to the Christian to be ever vigilant in the fight against the war on evil.  It is everywhere…even in places it shouldn’t be. 
Thank you Mr. Ladd for this wonderful book!  It is a wake-up call for all who may read it.   I highly recommend this book.  It is well worth the time it will take you to read it and you will be thinking about it for a long time after you have read the last page. 

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the author, Jason B. Ladd for an honest review.   I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Book Review-Forever Doon by Carey Corp & Lorie Langdon

Forever Doon
By:  Carey Corp & Lorie Langdon
Publisher:  Blink

“Forever Doon” begins with the Witch of Doon in power.  Queen Veronica is hiding from the witch in the countryside while trying to rebuild her life. Believing her beloved, Jamie has been killed, and trying to keep the citizens of Doon safe from the wrath of the witch is not an easy task, but Veronica must put her own grief aside and prepare her people for a fierce war that is to come.  Her life was slapped with a double whammy, because her best friend Mackenna and her boyfriend, Duncan, are trapped in the modern world in Alloway, because the Brig O’ Doon was destroyed and the portal fragmented.  This war will be fought on many dimensions with an unlikely army…of The Destined who willingly followed their Calling from all walks of life and from all countries, gathering together in Alloway, while waiting for the rebuilding of the Brig O’ Doon.

Although this book may be written for a young adult…if you need magical escapism, love, romance, and mystery this is a book you will thoroughly enjoy. Sadly, this is the fourth and final book in the Doon series. With each book I have been transported back in time when witchcraft was as real as eating.  The war between good and evil will keep you turning the pages and the imagination of the authors will keep on the edge of your seat, biting your nails as the undead (skellies) do the bidding of the witch against the Doonians. As the story unfolds you will find Queen Veronica doubting that she can be queen to Doon without Jamie, as she believes the witch has killed him.  The authors have done a great job in showing that even though we ask, in this case the Protector of Doon, to intervene it is not always the Protector’s will but in the end He will choose what is best.  The battles fought are not without loss but with great triumph for the people of Doon. 

I have loved the characters of Veronica, Mackenna, Jamie and Duncan from Beginning of the series.  They are fun-loving, a bit unconventional and serious when they need to be.  Although you do not need to read the first 3 books in the series, I highly recommend that you do so. 

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this Book by the publisher, Zondervan, (Blink) for an honest review.   I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Book Review-One Friday Afternoon by T.K. Chapin

One Friday Afternoon
Diamond Lake Series Book 2
By: T.K. Chapin

Before I get started in my review…I have said this before, if you love contemporary inspirational Christian Fiction then you must read T.K. Chapin’s books.  I promise you will not be disappointed and will finish the book feeling refreshed with a renewed faith in God, knowing there is a solution for the situation you may be in. 

In “One Friday Afternoon” Elizabeth Collins knows her marriage is over and she played a big role in it…but she decides to take a trip with her husband to the Inn at the Lake, hoping she and Nathan can renew their relationship before it is too late.  However both she and Nathan are keeping secrets that once revealed could tear them apart forever.

Wow! This was a soul searcher and a half!  As I read the events leading to Nathan and Elizabeth’s distance in their relationship, I wondered if I would be willing to let God lead in my life?  It was a shocker to think that I might not be able to put my feelings aside and let God take the lead and step out on faith.  Although T.K. Chapin takes the situation and molds it to fit in with forgiveness and the restoring of faith, he shows the journey is not easy…but it is possible with God as your pilot and a willing heart.  I thought the first book in the series, “One Thursday Morning” couldn’t be topped, but again I was wrong.  Although you do not need to read book one in the series, I encourage you to do so and let the inspired writings of Mr. Chapin speak to your heart. 

Disclaimer:  I was given a copy of this eBook by the author T.K. Chapin for review.  I was not compensated for my review nor was I required to make a favorable review.  All thoughts in this review are mine.  

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Book Review-A Beauty Refined by Tracie Peterson

A Beauty Refined
Sapphire 2 Brides
By:  Tracie Peterson
Publisher: Bethany House

Finding herself pregnant, Elizabeth Von Bergen realizes after losing three previous babies due to her abusive husband, she would have to leave him in order to save her unborn child’s life.  Leaving her other children, Phoebe and Dieter to go stay with a relative in England was the hardest thing she had ever done, but her plan was to have her daughter Phoebe join her. She doubted her son, Dieter would since her husband had poisoned him against her and he would soon be leaving for school. However, Count Von Bergen told his children their mother had died in a shipwreck while traveling to America and he forbade Elizabeth to ever contact them, for if she did, he would have her killed. 

Count Von Bergen was going to Helena, Montana to buy Sapphires and had agreed to have Phoebe accompany him.  Phoebe is excited at the prospect of visiting America but little does she realize the plans her father had for her.

Ian Harper works as a lapidary in Helena. The first time he sees Phoebe at the Broadwater Hotel, where his mother works, he finds her beauty breath-taking.  As their friendship grows he realizes her family’s story is a lie but she doesn’t know it.  Phoebe is smitten by Ian and begins to think about staying in America, even though her father has betrothed her to Duke older than himself …Will Phoebe defy her father for the first time in her life?

“A Beauty Refined” is a fast-paced Christian-based, Historical romance filled with twists and turns that will keep you on the edge of your seat from page one to the finish.  As Phoebe sees her mother for the first time in ten years and learns she has another brother, Kenny…she has much difficulty accepting her father was abusive to her mother.  Her mother gives her all the returned letters proving her mother is telling the truth, but her heart is having a hard time accepting it.  As her father’s deception unravels Phoebe, her mother, and little brother find themselves in grave danger.  Their faith in God is put to the test as they try to find a godly solution to their situation. Phoebe’s struggle in learning that God is real, and accepting Him as her personal Savior will bring tears to your eyes.  This book is a must-read if you enjoy Historical Christian Romance mixed with intrigue and inspiration.   

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this book by the publisher, Bethany House, through NetGalley blogger program for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Book Review-One Thursday Morning by T.K. Chapin

One Thursday Morning
Diamond Lake Series (book 1)
By: T.K. Chapin

How could Serenah tell her abusive husband, John, she was pregnant?  Would John accept that it is his or in his drunken stupor will he accuse Serenah of infidelity and will she be beaten once again?  Will she lose this wonderful life growing inside her?  These are some of the situations that Serenah faces as she struggles to deal with her husband’s abuse. 

Even though she loves John, she realizes not only her life, but the life of her unborn child is in danger. Serenah packs her belongings and moves cross country to Newport, Washington.  It’s a little town outside of Spokane that is just the right place to start over where no one can find her, especially John, even with all his money and contacts.  Dixie’s Diner and her friendship with Emma Montgomery (co-owner of Dixie’s Diner) was her saving grace.  Meeting Charlie certainly helped to spice things up a bit too!

I was hooked from the first page and couldn’t put the book down until I finished it.  I found myself holding my breath as I felt the fear Serenah felt.  I found myself crying for her and wanting to comfort her.  This book involves the reader on so many emotional levels.  Mr. Chapin in my opinion is on the best Christian romance writers.  I have read most, if not all, of his books and this book by far is the best ever.  He takes a real-life situation and shows how faith, love and God’s unfailing grace can change your life. 

This is book number one in the Diamond Lake Series.  This is definitely a must-read!...and I can’t wait for the next one! 

Although this book is Christian-based it will appeal to the Christian as well as the secular population. 

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the author, T.K. Chapin, for an honest review.   I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

Book Review-Counted With the Stars By Connilyn Cossette

Counted With the Stars
By:  Connilyn Cossette
Publisher:  Bethany House

About the book:
Kiya is sold into slavery by her father to a mistress, Tekurah, who enjoys nothing more than humiliating her and the man she is supposed to marry deserts her.  When the plagues come Kiya is in the middle of it all.   In order to save her brother and free herself from slavery, she flees Egypt with the Hebrews during their Exodus.  Kiya finds herself depending on a God she knows nothing about and she falling in love with a man who despises all Egyptians, including her, even though she has done nothing to him.  Her incredible journey is not only physical but also one of the heart as she opens it to the one and only Yahweh and falls in love with a man who despises her. 

My Review:
Can you imagine a life of being sold into slavery by your own father and fleeing your home country with people who serve a God that is foreign to you?  I can’t even begin to imagine what life was like for Kiya as she took this spiritual and physical journey.  Thankfully in the midst of all this turmoil she is befriended by a Hebrew slave, Shira, who shares her faith in God.  During the long Exodus Shira and her brother Eben help Kiya and her brother, Jumbo, learn to accept the Hebrew ways and teach them about God. 

All of my life I have read the Exodus from the Bible but never took the time until now to look at it through the eyes of a slave.  Cossette’s version of this story will forever challenge me to look at things from both angles.  As I read this book I enjoyed learning about Egyptian culture. I was also filled with wonder as I read about the plagues again with this time being an accounting from a slave girl.  With Cossette’s descriptions of the plagues you could feel the fear that Kiya felt and the awe she felt in the presence of Moses and when God spoke.  It was such a surreal feeling.   This book is filled with God’s love, goodness and mercy.  After reading it, you will feel a renewing of God’s love in your heart and it will remain with you long after you have read the last page.  I highly recommend this book.  It is one of the best fictional stories of the Exodus I have ever read.  I love that the basis of the story stuck to the scriptural accounting from the Bible.  It is a definite must-read!

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the publisher, Bethany House, through NetGalley blogger program for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Friday, June 24, 2016

Book Review-The Midwife's Dilemma by Delia Parr

The Midwife’s Dilemma
By Delia Parr
Publisher: Bethany House

Setting:  1830’s Pennsylvania
The third book in the At Home in Trinity Series.

Widow Martha Cade realizes that only life in Trinity is changing too fast but also in her personal life.  She finds herself struggling with her daughter’s desire to marry the new doctor in town, Dr. Benjamin McMillan, especially since she and the doctor don’t see eye to eye.  She has also been asked by Widower Thomas Dillon to marry him, but up until recently was unsure that was what she wanted to do.  However once he returns from his trip she would give consent to marry him with conditions.

Martha had to find someone to take over her job as midwife before she could marry Thomas because she knew the demands of her job would not be to his liking and the demands on her body were taking their toll.  Martha is having difficulty dealing with the fact she is getting older as are her children and she needs to let them go and try their own wings.  She is finding there are blessings and sorrows in letting them grow up.

Although this book is not fast-paced, it is a book that deals with the inner turmoil of life.  As Martha reflects on things she cannot change and trying to cope with them, I also find myself doing much the same thing.  It also shows even though Martha’s faith in her belief in God is strong, there are times when she has doubt but works through her doubt and regains her balance and faith.

This is truly a book about transitions in life, faith and friendships.  It is well worth reading.
I would like to read more about the transitions taking place in Trinity in the future and life for Martha without being a midwife. 

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the publisher, Bethany House, through NetGalley blogger program for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Book Review-Sins of the Past-Henderson, Pettrey, Eason

Sins of the Past
By: Henderson, Pettrey, Eason
Publisher:  Bethany House

Three great authors in one book are hard to beat!  Having been a fan of Dee Henderson and Dani Pettrey, it was easy to say yes to reading this and now that I have been introduced to Lynette Eason she will definitely be added to my reading list of authors.

Cheyenne, Wyoming Sheriff John Graham receives a call his elderly mother, Martha has gone missing from the home where she is living without a trace.  He flies to Chicago and is met by Lieutenant Sharon Noble of the Riverside police department.  The two have an immediate respect for each other, however their relationship on the romantic side seemed to be forced whereas on the professional side was very easy and natural.  It didn’t take long for me to figure out the who…but did take a while longer to figure out the why.  All in all it was a good novella for an afternoon reading session.  Being a fan of MS. Henderson I would not miss reading it. 

Shadowed-Dani Pettrey
 If you are a fan of the Alaskan McKenna Family, you will be captivated from the first page of this novella.  MS. Pettrey doesn’t disappoint in this fast-paced novella.  When Ben McKenna meets competitive swimmer Libby Jennings there is almost instant chemistry.  Libby’s life is in danger once her Russian team competitor has been found murdered.  Now Ben has to keep Libby alive and find out why Kat was murdered.  In this novella your will find, romance, murder and espionage all rolled into one afternoon of reading.  A must-read in my opinion. 

Blackout-Lynette Eason
Macey Adams cannot let anyone get close to her because she is afraid of what will happen to them.  However her neighbor Chad Latham, a police detective, comes to her aid one night when he hears horrific screams coming from her home.  These two have denied an attraction for each other for several years and Chad didn’t want to push her into a relationship she wasn’t ready for.  After this evening Chad became her protector, and in the quest to put an end to her past and find out who wanted her dead they let their affections for each other mature. 

This was a fast paced novella that will captivate you from the first page and keep you on the edge of your seat to the last page…I would highly recommend reading this.   

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the publisher, Bethany House, through NetGalley blogger program for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Book Review-The Atonement By: Beverly Lewis

The Atonement
By:  Beverly Lewis
Publisher:  Bethany House
About The Book:
Past mistakes for Lucy Flaud, an Amish girl from Bird-in-Hand stopped attending young people activities.  At age twenty-five she is past the age of courtship and has given up ever being married.  She begins to focus her life on helping others.  She does not limit her help only the Amish people but also to the Englishers.  No matter how much she does she still feels there is no redemption for her past mistakes.

Dale Wyeth meets Christian Flaud, Lucy’s father, who helps Dale understand the intricacies of living off the grid by inviting him to stay at the family farm.  Christian and Dale’s relationship causes Lucy to question if God is testing her?  Is this a test about her past or is it way that people from different cultures can find new beginnings?

My Review:
Lucy is guilt-ridden by a mistake she made as a teen-ager and has much resentment toward her father.  She wonders if God will ever forgive her for her past mistakes.  She begins the journey to healing by throwing herself into volunteering in soup kitchens, hospice and nursing homes.  She does not limit her help to the Amish, but to anyone in need.  Although all of this volunteer work occupies her time, it does not bring the peace she longs for.  Her father asks her to attend bereavement sessions with him in order to heal the rife between them.  It is here she meets Dale Wyeth, with whom her father becomes friends.  She wonders if this is God’s way of testing her for her past sins or will this be a way to heal?  These are questions that are answered as you read “The Atonement”.  Although it has a liberal amount of God’s love sprinkled through-out it is not overly religious.  It is simply the way of the Amish Culture.  This is well worth reading. 

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the publisher, Bethany House, through NetGalley blogger program for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.

Book Review-Traces of Guilt By: Dee Henderson

Traces of Guilt
(An Evie Blackwell Cold Case)
By:  Dee Henderson
Publisher:  Bethany House

Evie Blackwell loves her life as an Illinois State Police detective . . . mostly. She's very skilled at investigations and has steadily moved up through the ranks. She would like to find Mr. Right, but she has a hard time imagining how marriage could work, considering the demands of her job. 

Gabriel Thane is a lifetime resident of Carin County and now its sheriff, a job he loves. Gabe is committed to upholding the law and cares deeply for the residents he's sworn to protect. He too would like to find a lifetime companion, a marriage like his parents have.

When Evie arrives in Carin, Illinois, it's to help launch a new task force dedicated to reexamining unsolved crimes across the state. Spearheading this trial run, Evie will work with the sheriff's department on a couple of its most troubling missing-persons cases. As she reexamines old evidence to pull out a few tenuous new leads, she unearths a surprising connection . . . possibly to a third cold case. Evie's determined to solve the cases before she leaves Carin County, and Sheriff Thane, along with his family, will be key to those answers.

This is not your typical Dee Henderson romantic suspense novel.  Instead this is more about closing cold cases using good old fashioned detective work.  Evie Blackwell has been asked by Ann Falcon (from Full Disclosure) to come to Carin County to work cold-cases involving a six year old girl (Ashley Dayton) along with the Florist family gone missing with no traces being left behind, two pedophiles being killed, Karen Joy Lewis hiding from a killer and Grace Arnett trying to find out what happened to her parents so she can begin healing after being abused for years after her parents went missing.  If Evie can close these cases…she might be chosen to work the new cold-case task-force Governor-elect Bliss will be implementing when he is sworn into office.   There is no justice in any of these cases as most of the people died, but there is healing for the community and those family members left behind.  Although this is not what I expected when I picked up the book to read it, I was encouraged by the degree of healing, forgiveness and love for humanity.  I also felt there was a budding romance between Evie Blackwell and Gabriel Thane.  I believe the ground-work is being laid to see them together again in the future in a more romantic setting.  I thoroughly enjoyed this book and would highly recommend.

Disclosure: I was given a copy of this eBook by the publisher, Bethany House, through NetGalley blogger program for review. I was not required to write a favorable review nor was I compensated for my review. The opinions in this review are my own.