Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Twice Promised by Maggie Brendan - a review

I love Maggie Brendan's work and after reading Deeply Devoted,(read my review here), the first book in "The Blue Willow Brides" series, I had to read Twice Promised.  

Twice Promised is the story of Greta Olsen, a mail order bride from Wyoming.  On the train to Central City, Colorado, she meets Cora Johnson, another mail order bride.  They become quick friends and soon find that they are both traveling to Central City with the hopes of marrying the same man, Jess Gifford.  The first problem is, Jess didn't write to either bride and the second problem is his brother Zach did write to them both using Jess's name.  Zach asks the brides to give it a month and if they want to leave he will pay their way home.

Both brides stay and begin working in the brother's mercantile store.  Jess, the older brother is angry with his brother for bringing the brides to town, but in time he softens to the idea of taking a bride.   He finds Cora is the quiet one and easy to get along with while he soon finds himself butting heads with Greta on a regular basis.

In order to decide which brother would court which bride, the brother's Granny devises a plan to pair the brides with her grandsons.  Unfortunately, in time, the two couples find they are mismatched.

A year before Greta arrived in Central City, she lost the love of her life, Brian Gifford, to a renegade indian's arrow.  Ironically, Jess and Zach are Brian's older brothers.  Greta answered the advertisement for a mail order bride because the name was the same as Brian's.  Greta doesn't discover Brian is really Jess and Zach's brother until a little over half way through the book.  Jess finds Greta crying at Brian's grave and the truth comes out.

I could go on and tell you who ends up with who but that would spoil the story.  My readers know I dislike spoilers so I will just say that you won't be disappointed with the outcome of this book.  Twice Promised is a very sweet love story with memorable characters that invite you into their story and hold you there long enough to allow you to fall in love with each one of them.  Another gift this book offers is two romance stories within one book.

I would like to thank Donna Hausler and Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group for my copy of Twice Promised.  I received my copy for free in order to read it and offer my honest review, which I have done.

On a 5-Star Scale -5 STARS!!!!!

“Available October 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

Smiles & Blessings,

Monday, October 15, 2012

Practicing the Presence of Jesus by Wally Armstrong - a review

Do you believe in Jesus but sense there is something missing in your relationship with Him?  Have you ever had the desire to grow closer to Jesus?  Would you like to know Him as a true companion and friend?  In Practicing the Presence of Jesus, Wally Armstrong shares his journey in growing his friendship with Jesus.

One day, while on the golf course, pro golfer, Wally Armstrong experienced a moment in which he realized Jesus offered him the same gift of a close and personal friendship that He shared with His disciples over 2000 years ago.

In Mr. Armstrong's book, he clearly shares his experience of being in the presence of Jesus and the wonderful relationship he has developed.  He offers simple steps to the reader on how to interact with Jesus as if he were sitting by their side.

Practicing the Presence of Jesus is a book I jumped at the chance to review.  I really knew very little about the book but knew in my heart that it was a book I needed to read.  I wasn't disappointed by any means.  Wally Armstrong shares his journey of growing closer to Jesus in a down to earth, easy to comprehend way.

The book itself is quite small, containing only 112 pages in it's paperback form.  I was able to read the entire book in just a few hours but I must say that I now plan on reading it the second time and taking notes.

This is a book I would highly suggest to anyone wanting to grow closer in their relationship with Jesus Christ.

On a 5-star scale - 5 Stars!!!

I would like to thank Litfuse Publicity and Summerside Press for my review copy of Practicing the Presence of Jesus.  I received my copy for free in order to read it and give my honest review, which I have done.

Smiles & Blessings,

Sunday, October 7, 2012

The Gaither Homecoming Bible - a review

I am a BIG fan of Bill and Gloria Gaither! When I learned that they were the general editors of a new Bible, The Gaither Homecoming Bible, I was ecstatic.  Imagine my delight when I was given the chance to review their Bible.

The Gaither Homecoming Bible is without a doubt the most beautiful Bible I have ever held in my hands.  From the first page to the last the colors and pictures "POP" off the page.  If you have ever watched any of the Gaither Homecoming shows on television you will know that a lot of people take part in a Homecoming show.  Well, those people also took part in producing this Bible.  In the first few pages you will find a small picture of each contributor along with a short bio.  I loved this part as it gave me a chance to 'get to know' some of my favorites. The area for family records is more extensive then in some of my other Bibles.

Throughout this New King James version, Gloria Gaither explains the inspiration for twenty-five Gaither songs. This is probably one of the features I love most. There are also stories pertaining to fifty popular hymns and gospel songs as well as devotionals written by the contributing Homecoming artists.  What I found interesting is the artists wrote their devotionals on their favorite Scripture passages. There are Scripture devotions written by Gloria Gaither, quotes from great people of faith reflecting on the importance of music in believer's lives, and five articles by Gloria Gaither on the significance of music throughout the Bible and in the lives of today's believers. Sprinkled throughout the Bible are also some original poems by Gloria Gaither.

As you turn each page of The Gaither Homecoming Bible, you will find beautiful colorful pictures of nature.     I was so totally blown away with the beauty on each page.  Not only the beauty of the Scriptures themselves but the photography.

The Gaither Homecoming Bible has already become a treasure to me.  It is not only inspirational as the inspired Word of God but as it states on the cover, it is "Inspiring Hope Through Scripture, Song and Story".  I would highly recommend this Bible to anyone.

On a 5-Star scale - 5 Stars!!!!!

I would like to thank the BookSneeze Program and Thomas Nelson Publishers for my free copy of The Gaither Homecoming Bible. I received my copy for free in order to give my honest review.

When a Heart Stops by Lynette Eason - a review

Lynette Eason's When a Heart Stops is the story of medical examiner, Serena Hopkins, and FBI agent, Dominic Allen.  In her youth, Serena had a crush on Dominic, the brother of her best friend.  When the story begins, they are brought back together when a serial killer starts killing off people from Serena's high school graduating class.

As Dominic and Serena begin reviewing the evidence they find the that the methods of this serial killer mimic that of the Doll Maker Killer, a serial killer who is sitting in prison.  Dominic and Serena fear they have a copycat killer on the loose.  However, by the end of the book an alarming realization lets the reader know that....oops! I almost gave you a spoiler which I try to never do.  

When a Heart Stops actually has to suspenseful story lines that the reader is made to believe are one and the same.  I must say I was disappointed by the way the book ended. I pretty much figured out who the serial killer was and I believe I figured out who the characters are who are involved in the second story line.  However, the second story line wasn't resolved.  That of course means I have to wait until the next book in the Deadly Reunions series is released.  I love it when an author writes a series of books with characters interacting throughout all the books, but I am not a big fan of cliffhangers.  I guess I need to learn patience.

I have read several of Ms. Eason's books and find that she has a way of creating believable characters that you want to root for and again there are those you really don't like.  The story, while plot driven, is facilitated well by the characters.  It was definitely a page turner.

I would highly recommend When a Heart Stops for anyone who loves good Christian Suspense. However, if you are like me, and dislike cliffhangers, you might want to wait until the next book in the series is released.

On a 5-Star scale - 4 1/2 Stars!!!!

I would like to thank Donna Hausler and Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, for my review copy of When a Heart Stops. I received my copy for free in order to read it and give my honest review, which I have done.

**** Available October 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group****

Smiles & Blessings,

Monday, October 1, 2012

Winner of Margaret Daley's "Shattered Silence"

to Pam K.

Pam K. was selected by Random.Org as the winner of Margaret Daley's book Shattered Silence!

I have sent an email to Pam K. and she has 48 hours to respond or another name will be selected.  For those of you who didn't win this time, please come back soon as I have quite a few books I am lining up for giveaways!

Smiles & Blessings,