Sunday, March 27, 2011

The Lightkeeper's Bride by Colleen Coble - a Review

I have been an avid reader pretty much my entire life.  But ten years ago, I got married at the ripe old age of 48 for the first time.  It was also my husband's first marriage & he was 50.  We had known each other in high school in California and well, that's another story all in would actually make a great storyline for a novel.  But that's not what this post is about.  When I got married, for whatever reason I stopped reading.  I stopped until one wonderful day when I was listening to our local Christian Radio Station, WBCL in Ft. Wayne, IN.  At 9am every weekday morning, the Mid-Morning team discusses books and usually have in studio or telephone interviews with Christian authors.  The particular morning that turned me back to reading, the guest was Christain Romantic Suspense author, Colleen Coble.

I was so intrigued by her interview that I stopped by the library on my way home from work and checked out Without a Trace and Beyond a Doubt.  I devoured both books and went back for more, and more until I had read everything they had by Ms. Coble.  I have since bought my own copies of many of her books.

Have you ever encountered an author that you just couldn't wait until their new novel hit the shelves?  Well, Colleen Coble is that author for me.  I just finished reading The Lightkeeper's Bride and found that I couldn't put it down, which is the case with all of Ms. Coble's books. 

Blurb from the back of The Lightkeeper's Bride:

When Katie answers the call of duty, she awakens the call of her heart.

Katie Russell loves working as a telephone operator in Mercy Falls, California. But since childhood she has been expected to marry well. Her family presses for an engagement to wealthy bachelor Barholomew Foster and though he doesn't stir her heart, their engagement promises a secure financial future.

Working the phone lines one evening, Katie overhears a chilling exchange between her friend Eliza and a familiar male voice. Katie soon learns that Eliza has disappeared, and the crime may be linked to another investigation by handsome new lighthouse keeper, Will Jesperson.  Katie and Will soon form an alliance. An alliance that slowly blossoms into something more.

Despite the danger surrounding her, Katie is powerfully drawn to Will. But she in not at liberty to marry for love. And though society forbids their growing affection. Katie can't help but notice Will's sense of peace. It's a peace that rests on his trust in God - a trust that Katie has never had to depend on, with her future so clearly mapped out before her.

But the more Katie uncovers of the mystery, the more she discovers about herself, her past, and the brilliant future that could be hers if only she has the courage to trust in God and follow where her heart so fearlessly leads.

From the opening sentence to the turn of the last page, I was held captive.  I always know when I read a Colleen Coble novel that I will be entertained throughout the book. I have never been disappointed.  I would rate this book 5 out of 5 stars.  It is good clean fun and there is a nice thread of God's love shown throughout the book. 

The Lightkeeper's Bride is the second book in the Mercy Falls series.  The first in the series was The Lightkeeper's Daughter and it too was an awesome read.  I can hardly wait to read her next in the series, The Lightkeeper's Ball.

If you love good Christian Romantic Suspense I would suggest you introduce yourself to Colleen Coble's work.

Have a wonderful day!

Smiles & Blessings,

Monday, March 14, 2011

The Shape of Mercy by Susan Meissner - a review & giveaway (ends April 4th)

Okay, when I selected THE SHAPE OF MERCY by Susan Meissner to review, it was with a little bit of trepidation.  I read a short blurb about it and & to say the least I wasn't sure I would like the book.  Well, I'm here to tell you I was wrong.  I LOVED the book!  I have never read anything by Susan Meissner but you can be sure I will be reading more of her work.  She is definitely a gifted writer.

THE SHAPE OF MERCY is a contemporary story set in Santa Barbara & the Pacific Palisades in California.  But the story is stirred by a 300 year old diary that was written during the Salem witch trials.  The diary was written by Mercy Haworth, a young Puritan girl. and it was passed down through eight generations of Mercy's family and came into the care of Abigail Boyles. 

The story begins with Miss Boyles hiring a student, Lauren Durough, from UC Santa Barbara, to edit the diary for clarity and to transcribe it into a language more readable for modern audiences.  As Lauren works on transcribing the diary the reader is drawn into Mercy's world.  Ms. Meissner has written the diary portions so well that I felt like I was there, in Salem, as the Witch Trials were happening. 

This book is about three women, Mercy, Abigail and Lauren.  All of different eras yet drawn together because of a diary.  You experience their lives, loves and their love of God throughout the book.  I would highly recommend this book and would give it a 5 star rating.



     Leaving a life of privilege to strike out on her own, Lauren Durough breaks with her family's expectations and takes a part-time job from eighty-three-year-old librarian Abigail Boyles.  The mysterious employer asks Lauren to transcribe the journal entries of her ancestor Mercy Hayworth, a victim of the Salem witch trials.
     Immediately, Lauren finds herself drawn to this girl who lived and died four centuries ago.  As the fervor around the witch accusations increases, Mercy becomes trapped, unable to fight the overwhelming influence of snap judgments and superstitions.  Lauren realizes that the secrets of Mercy's story extend beyond the pages of her diary, living on in the mysterious, embittered Abigail.
     The strength of her affinity with Mercy forces Lauren to take a startling new look at her own life, including her relationships with Abigail, her college roommate, and a young man named Raul.  But on the way to the truth, will Lauren find herself playing the helpless defendant or the misguided judge?
     Can she break free from her own perceptions and see who she really is?

My copy of THE SHAPE OF MERCY was sent to me by Waterbrook Multomah for my honest opinion.

I would love to pass on my gently used copy of this book to one lucky reader.


1. Giveaway is open to US and Canada

2. No PO Boxes please

3. You MUST be a follower of my blog (please leave name you follow under in your comment)

4. Include an email address where I can reach you if you are selected as the winner of this giveaway. Please enter you email address in this format - name[at]yahoo[dot]com

To enter, please answer this question:  What is your favorite genre of books to read?

Giveaway will run through April 4th and a winner will be selected using

Smiles & Blessings,

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Book of Days by James L. Rubart

Well, James L. Rubart has done it again. If you haven't read any of his books yet you are truly missing out on reading a very talented author's work. I read Rooms, his debut novel and could hardly put it down. It was one of those books that you can hardly wait to get to the end but then when you're finished you can't believe that it's over. I waited patiently for his second novel, Book of Days, to come out and I must say, he didn't disappoint me. From the turn of the first page to the turn of the last, I was captivated.

Both Rooms and Book of Days are books that make you think. Think deep.

I know I haven't told you any of the meat of either novel but I believe it could spoil them for you. I will say that Rooms takes you on a journey of discovery. Book of Days takes you on a quest for THE Book of Days. Enough said. Go out and buy both books or visit your nearest library...YOU WON'T BE DISAPPOINTED. I can hardly wait for his next novel The Chair which is due to release later this year.

Smiles & Blessings,