Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Beloved by Robin Lee Hatcher

This was not your typical romance story. Rather than an arranged marriage or a typical courtship, Tyson and Diana were already married. I loved the way Tyson had to earn the trust of his wife back after years of abandonment. Diana has trust issues (for obvious reasons) and makes Tyson work to earn her love.

Diana is a strong character who has to learn to be vulnerable with her husband. Tyson shows his fortitude and strength of character as he works to gain her trust.

Overall, I really enjoyed this story. It was sweet and thoughtful, with just the right amount of spiritual issues present. Ms. Hatcher did another great job with this book!

- I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Last Light - 3 stars

I enjoy Terri Blackstock's books and have read almost all of her published works. However, this was not my favorite book. Although, it was well written, I found myself getting confused at some parts. Also, it seemed that this "thriller" was a little slow at times.

The characters seemed pretty shallow and not very developed. Still, it was interesting enough to continue reading.

I was fascinated by the way she handled the issue of our world going "dark". Other authors have written their fictional take on this possibility, and I think that Ms. Blackstock did a great job of doing it differently.

If you are looking for a semi thriller book, that will get you thinking about our world in a different way, you will enjoy this book.

3 stars

I received this book in exchange for my honest review

My Hope is Found - 4 stars

I was eagerly anticipating this book after reading the first two. It didn't isappoint...much.


Lonnie has all but given up hope for her lost love, which is just about the time a new interest comes along.


Honestly, I got so frustrated at Lonnie for being so indecisive. She was pining for Gideon,  now that he was back,  she might not want him? What?  And she lead Toby on the whole time while she was deciding.


I enjoyed reading about Gideon's journey back to God,  but felt like there could have even been more without it sounding too preachy.


Overall,  this book is a great wrap up to Lonnie and Gideon's story, and even leaves it open for a new story between Toby and Cassie perhaps?


Four stars
I received this book in exchange for my honest review!

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Forever Friday - 4 stars

This is a sweet read about how two people kept the passion alive in their marriage amidst the trials and complacency of life. The thing that makes this story different from the "typical" love story, is the perspective from which it is written.

The story is written from two perspectives, first from the couple themselves. And second, from a recent divorcee who is looking for help and advice from the postcards the couple sent each other every week of their marriage.

Admittedly, this story was a little challenging for me to get into in the first few chapters, but after the book ended, I had to go back and reread them with fresh perspective!

It is a good reminder of how important it is to continue working on your marriage, even after the wedding. It is a sweet testament to love and how, when it is worked on, love never fails.

I strongly recommend this book, if you are looking for a love story that is a little different. You will not be disappointed.

4 stars!

-I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Sweet and Sentimental

I have a tendency to gravitate away from novellas, as a habit. I just enjoy books that go deeper and are much more developed. So the fact that I thoroughly enjoyed this book, is saying a LOT.

There are four stories wrapped up nicely in this one book. They each display the tale of a mail order bride and the confusion that ensues when things aren't what is expected.

I love how each author had a different plot and setting of the story, but one thing remained true throughout. All the characters went through the same mail order catalog and the same trouble of meeting someone different than their letters.

You will laugh and enjoy the sweetness of these short stories. There is a slight aroma of religion, but it isn't strong and I found myself longing for more.

4 stars

I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

A Simple Change

Have you ever been really hungry and eaten a meal that just didn't satiate your appetite? For me, this book was like that.

Jancey makes a difficult decision to move to a simpler place with her parents. Meanwhile, her jilted suitor tries to get her back and she gains the interest of several single fellows in her new town.

When her curiosity lands her in a heap of trouble, she learns to rely on God's strength and not her own thoughts.

This book was sweet, and surface level. I had longed for the author to go so much deeper. There were multiple relationships and situations in this book that just weren't explained or given depth to.

I think this book has incredible potential, but it just didn't meet up with my hungry expectations.

3 stars

I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Redeeming Love - 5 stars

Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

It wouldn't be right to have a blog about good books and not review Redeeming Love, by Francine Rivers. This book captivates me. It is based upon the book of Hosea in the Bible. I found myself reading and rereading that obscure book in the Old Testament, because I had to know more.

This book helped me develop a deeper understanding of the love of God. The heroine of the book, Angel, lived her young life in prostitution. She was in and out of brothels, until Michael rescues her from that existence to follow the Lord's guidance. I found myself relating to Angel, who runs away from this man who loves her so much, only to return to her past existence. Likewise, it is so hard for me to stay in the midst of God's gracious love when my sinful past seems hard, but comfortable. At least I know I deserve my past.

In the book, I found my heart being transformed with Angel's. Her hard heart against Michael and God was melted through the continual love and grace shown to her.

This book WILL change the way you see yourself in God's eyes. I definitely give it 5 stars!

-I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Friday, July 5, 2013

Letter to Katie - 3 stars

I have read Amish novels before. I found Letters to Katie somewhat lacking though. I realize that may be because I haven't read any other in the series. The characters were hard to follow and seemed limitedly developed.

I did like the fact that this story was unpredictable. Katie fawns over a man who has never returned her affections. Then, when he does, it seems it might be too late. I enjoyed the fact that Katie turns to God instead of pining away after different men.

Overall, if you like Amish books, then I would recommend this one. If not though, you might try a different series.

-I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Splitting Harriet - 4 stars

Splitting Harriet was a sweet, summer read. I loved how this book was a little different, and not too predictable.

I really enjoyed this book. Harriet is a prodigal turned Pharisee. As a Pastor's kid, she rebelled in her teen years and ended up on the wrong side of a biker bar. Now she is reformed, but grace seems to have lost its place in her life.

When a church consultant threatens to cause turmoil in everything she holds dear, will her faith be enough to see her through?

 I connected with Harriet as a rebel who had to learn about God's grace myself, I know how hard it can be to swing to the extreme side. From the one being judged to the judger. Harriet has to learn how to lighten up and allow God's grace and forgiveness wash over her and others. In the process, Maddox helps reveal some things in her heart that she has kept hidden. Their relationship develops in a very real and entertaining way. They are both very believable characters, as if you could go to your neighborhood church and meet them.

 I have never read a book by this author before, but I certainly will be looking for others from now on.

- I received this book in exchange for my honest review

Monday, June 10, 2013

Barefoot Summer

I read this book in one day. Admittedly, it was a lazy day and I was not feeling like doing much else. Still, I thoroughly enjoyed this story.

Denise Hunter does a fabulous job of developing Beckett and Madison. They both harbor their own secrets that they carry with them as a pile of dung. It weighs on them, it affects them.

I loved the strength of their friendship grow from an awkward acquaintance to good friends and finally, to more than that.

Both Beckett and Madison go through growth in their faith as well, they have to struggle through issues and fight for truth.

Denise Hunter is a great author, I highly recommend her books. Including this one!

Great for a book to take to the beach this summer!

4 stars

~I received this book from the publisher in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Once upon a Prince

I absolutely loved this book. Maybe it was because the little girl in me just can't seem to get enough of fairy tales, maybe because it was almost believable. I can't really explain it, I just know I really enjoyed it! Once Upon a Prince is your semi-typical Cinderella story, but it has a few twists and turns as well.

I loved how Rachel Hauck added her own take on the story, by adding God in it. It is only when Suzanne learns to surrender and lean on God, that He makes her wildest dreams come true.

Granted, there were a few corny parts, but that can't really be helped in a fairy tale. It was sweet. It made me think about how I need to surrender some things in MY life.

I give this 4.5 stars!

~I received this book in exchange for my honest review.


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Heiress of Winterwood

This is the author's first novel, but you can't tell from her writing. I found this story compelling, it kept me interested throughout.

I know that books about marriage for convenience are in abundance, but this one had a slight edge to it. It was different.

I enjoyed the use of Scripture throughout the novel, and the way the characters grew in their faith.

The plot developed well, the characters were real and believable. It gives the reader some things to think about, such as keeping a promise, even when everything is telling you it isn't worth it.

Four stars!

~I received this book in exchange for my honest review.


If you haven't tried Palmolive Soft Touch, you are missing out!

I have realized that I was my hands like 50 times a day, when I am in the kitchen. After a while, this really dries out my flanges.

Influenster sent me this awesome product to try and I love it! I don't ever want to go back to regular soap again!

Jennifer - An O'Malley Love Story

Dee Henderson used to be my hands down, all star, favorite author.

I was a part of her fan club. I gave her books to friends and family.

Then, she just stopped writing for a while. I'm not sure what happened, but I was SO excited when she resurfaced.

Unfortunately, it seems something happened while she was away from the writing scene. Her books ever since her comeback and just not the same.

Dee Henderson's O'Malley series is amazing. It is well writing, suspenseful and gets you thinking.

For me, this novella didn't meet up.

I feel like this book was thrown together, and was sort of incomplete.

I love the way Dee Henderson tells a love story, and this one isn't an exception. It just was shorter and unfinished.

If you have read the series, you will enjoy going back to read the book that starts it all. But, be forewarned, it isn't like the others.

~I received this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Kidecal labels

Okay, with a little one running all around the house, neighborhood, church and goodness knows where, you probably understand the need to have some sort of identifying labels.

I am constantly being asked at church, "Is everything labeled?"

The answer is and always has been, "NO!" when do I have time to run through the house labeling everything?

Well, now I can. Kidecals makes it super easy to do just that!

These labels are personalized, durable and totally washable!

They have all different kinds of designs, including a fun moustache design!

 My Readers Save 15% off Kidecals the most durable waterproof labels on the market use promo code: bestlabels at http://kidecals.com/

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

An Amish Kitchen - 2 stars

I have read books by Beth Wiseman in the past, and I enjoy her writing. I guess it was my high expectations of her writing that made Amish Kitchen such a disappointment to me.

I have promised my readers to me honest with my reviews, and it is for that reason that this review is painful to write.

I struggled with this book. I struggled to finish it. I found the stories superficial and simple. It seemed like high school writing, instead of writing done by published authors. It seemed that in effort to make a collection of short stories, they sacrificed quality for quantity.

I thought the stories were sweet, but oh so predictable.

Granted, this book does give you more insight into the Amish culture, so that is a perk.

I encourage you to read this and prove me wrong. Judging from the reviews of this book on other websites, I am one of the few that was disappointed in this book.

2 stars

*I received this book for free in exchange for my hones review.

Though My Heart is Torn - 5 stars!

When I first choose, Though my Heart is Torn, to review, I hadn't realized that I'd already read the first book in series. So when I first got started reading, I was little confused, but then the characters fell into place and I realized that I have read this series, or at least the first book in the series.

Gideon and Lonnie's story is captivating. I admit that I read this book in one day.  I just couldn't put it down, and yet I was so frustrated with the ending. I won't give it away, but I will tell you even with the ending reading the book is totally worth it.

Gideon and Lonnie have grown to love each other. Their love has grown from suffering and trials which makes it even more beautiful and deep. After all the suffering, they finally get to be together. That is ,until they realize Gideon has made some choices in his past that will affect his future. Will they be able to stay together, or will Gideon's past come back to break them apart?

Let me warn you if you read this book you're going to need some tissues. You might as well block off the whole day in your calendar while you're at it, because you're going to want to not put this book down.

5 stars!

*I received this book for free from Waterbrook Press, in exchange for my review

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Shattered - 5 stars

Have you ever heard of someone doing something unthinkable...and you just KNEW they were innocent?

Piper McKenna hears of the murder of a traveling ski bunny, but the most startling news of all, the only suspect is her brother.
Convinced of his innocence, Piper goes on a personal crusade to find the guilty person. In the meantime, she puts herself in danger - of falling in love and getting killed.

I have never read a book by Dani Pettrey, but I love Dee Henderson. So when I saw that she gave a recommendation for this book, I knew it would be a good one. I was right! I am so glad that this is the second book in a series, because that means I can now go read the first one!

Shattered takes you on a wild ride that keeps you guessing. This is one of those books that my husband doesn't like because he leaves for work and comes home to find me on the couch, reading...and nothing else done!
I love Piper's unquestioning faith and devotion to her brother and Landon's self sacrificing love for Piper.

This is a sweet romance, a suspenseful ride and a quality plot.

5 stars

*I received this book from Bethany House in exchange for my honest review.

Wishing on Willows - 4.5 stars

How is it possible for an author to grab your heart as quickly as Katie Ganshert does in Wishing on Willows?

Robin is a new widow. This life is nothing like what she pictured it would be when she said her vows on her wedding day. The only things she has going for her is her son, and the cafe that was her dream with her husband.

Now, some hotshot is threatening to take away the café. She survived the passing of her husband, but how could she survive the death of her dream? Ian Mckay is the developer who is trying to take her café, yet, his self sacrificing love shows another side of him. Will Robin be able to let down her guard and grieve the past in time to allow love to enter her life again?

Katie Ganshert does a beautiful job of wrapping around your heart and not letting go. You will cry, you will be angry for Robin. She makes her protagonist so believable, you want to march into town and take up her cause with her.

I love the rich pictures that Katie Ganshert develops in this book. Definitely a recommended read!

4.5 stars

* I received this book for free in exchange for my honest review

Unbreakable - 4.5 stars

I read and reviewed the first book in the Road to Kingdom series. I found this series delightful and a pleasant surprise.
Nancy Mehl weaves an intriguing tale with the use of suspense, great characters and a quality plot.
Hope Kauffman is engaged to Ebbie, but her heart is torn for another. While she is struggling to decide between the two men who love her, someone is terrorizing her town. Will faith win our or will the residents take matters into their own hands?
I love the way Nancy Mehl develops the characters and keeps you guessing about which man Hope will eventually pick. Usually, I can figure out where the plot is going, but this one kept me guessing! I also loved how Nancy asked a very good and difficult theological question throughout the book. Will God protect the town, or do they need to protect themselves?
Nancy does a fantastic job keeping the reader on the edge. You will find the need to keep reading even past your bedtime (you've been warned).
If possible, this was even better than the first in the series.
I give this book 4.5 stars!
*I received this book for free in exchange for my honest review.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Dandelions in the Wind

Dandelions in the Wind
I have read books by Mona Hodgson before, and I enjoy her writing.

Unfortunately, this book was an exception. I thought the story line was creative and sweet, the problem is; the story was not developed. The characters seemed very one dimensional. The plot moved way too quickly and didn't have much development.

This was a disappointing read for me, because I expected a lot from Mona Hodgson and she did not deliver.

If you want a quick read (a little over 100 pages) that is sweet and light, then you will enjoy this book.

*I received this book from Waterbrook Press in exchange for my honest review.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Secretly Smitten

I have read books by some of these authors, but not all of them. I found this book, Secretly Smitten, a delightful read.

There are four (really five) different stories, in one book. I love how the authors all came together to collaborate on this one novel.

To be honest, it did seem like some of the books were rushed and not the best writing they have done. Still, it was a sweet set of novelas. My favorite was the last one, Love Blooms, because it seemed more developed than the other stories.

I really enjoyed reading the different stories from each woman's perspective. From the sisters, to the mom, and even the grandma. It was a whole family affair.

I recommend this book to people who want a longer book, but don't want to think too much. It is a sweet book, but nothing in it challenges you to be a better person.

**I recieved this book for free in exchange for my honest review.

Echoes - 3 stars

This is one of those books that you read for fun, what I like to call 'mind candy'. It tastes good, but doesn't really stick with you. This book is sweet, but doesn't really make you think.

Lauren seems to get into trouble wherever she goes, when she 'mutually' breaks up with her boyfriend, she is devestated. Her brother brings her this new fangled contraption, called a computer. (This book is a little outdated) and she joins an online community. There she meets a young man known as K.C. They develop a friendship that deeps into something greater.

Although this book is such a sweet read, I did find it to be outdated. Some of the younger generation are going to read this and not be able to relate at all. (How can a youngish woman NOT know how to use a computer?)

Still, if you are looking for a quick read on vacation, this is a good pick!

I love Robin Jones Gunn, she has quite a few good books. Check them out!

3 stars

**I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Schick Hydro Silk Razor

Have you tried this razor yet? I have had the opportunity to try it through BzzAgent. It is amazing. It leaves you feeling smooth, silky and longing for more time in the shower!

Wildflowers from Winter

Wildflowers from Winter: A Novel

If you read this book, you are going to need some tissues. Trust me on this one. Wildflowers from Winter is full of raw emotion. The characters in this novel are real and genuine. They drag you in from the first chapter and don't let you go.

Bethany has gone through so much pain and hurt and holds it all inside, as we all do. When she is called back to the place she longs so desperately to leave, she is torn between her own desires and that which she knows she should do.

Through the relationships along the way, she learns to come face to face with the past she has been running from.

I found this book compelling, and heart wrenching. As much as I loved most of the book, it did seem as if it ended quickly. I finished the book with questions, and confused about some things.

All in all, I think this was a great read. I definitely recommend it!

Four stars!

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

Monday, January 28, 2013

Secrets - Robin Jones Gunn

I was so excited to read this book, as I have read books from Robin Jones Gunn in the past and really enjoyed them. I dove right in.

After a few chapters, I started thinking, "This book reminds me of another that I have read." By the middle of the book, I realized I have already read this book before. Within the last year!

It's a high compliment to the book that I have read this book so recently and yet I continued reading it.

Robin Jones Gunn is a great writer, and I always enjoy her books. They are candy for the mind. In Secrets, the reader finds Jessica running away from something. In her attempt to run away, she also runs away from things which would bring hope, such as a budding relationship with a town firefighter.

As in all secrets, Jessica realizes that the truth must come out for a relationship to go forward. Secrets takes us on her journey of finding truth, both in her heart and from her God.

Good read, 4 stars!

* I received this book in exchange for my honest review

Friday, January 18, 2013

Clouds by Robin Jones Gunn

Jonathan and Shelly were best friends growing up. As so often does, time broke them apart. Now they have a second chance, or at least that is how it seems. Unfortunately, a previous engagement stands in the way of a reunion of their friendship and love.

I enjoyed this book. It makes a statement that I think is so important. So frequently, women think that once they get married they will be happy. Or their life will come together in marriage...SO not TRUE!

Robin Jones Gunn uses Shelly to explain the truth that a relationship with Christ should come before any other relationship. It is only when Shelly deepens her relationship with the Creator of the Universe that she finds out how to be truly content, with or without Jonathan.

A great read and a great reminder of what is truly important in life.

4 stars!

*I received this book in exchange for my honest review