Tuesday, August 31, 2010

The Berenstain Bears and the Gift of Courage by Jan & Mike Berenstain - REVIEWED

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!



You never know when I might play a wild card on you!





Today's Wild Card author is:





and the book:



The Berenstain Bears and the Gift of Courage

Zonderkidz (April 9, 2010)

***Special thanks to Krista Ocier of Zondervan for sending me a review copy.***





ABOUT THE AUTHORS:






Stan and Jan Berenstain introduced the first Berenstain Bear books in 1962. Mike Berenstain grew up watching his parents work together to write about and draw these lovable bears. Eventually he started drawing and writing about them too. Mike is married to Andrea, and they have three children. They live in Pennsylvania, in an area that looks a lot like Bear Country.





Visit the authors' website.





Product Details:



List Price: $3.99

Reading level: Ages 4-8

Paperback: 32 pages

Publisher: Zonderkidz (April 9, 2010)

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0310712564

ISBN-13: 978-0310712565

My Thoughts:
Papa Bear never knew what effects his Bible story time would ultimately have on Sister and Brother bear. The two bear cubs had to draw on the Bible wisdom as they walked to school the very next day and came face to face with some not-very-nice bear cubs! Brother and Sister cubs were very brave in the face of danger, because they stood up for what was right. Papa Bear's faithfulness to teach his cubs lessons from the Bible paid off in a mighty way!

The Berenstain bears continue to enchant me, and I am so incredibly happy to see this dear bear family teaching kids lessons from the Bible! I can't recommend this book highly enough!!



PRESS THE BROWSE BUTTON TO VIEW THE FIRST CHAPTER:





Monday, August 30, 2010

The Vigilante's Bride by Yvonne Harris - REVIEWED


About the Book: (from the publisher)
Robbing a stagecoach on Christmas Eve and abducting a woman passenger is the last thing Luke Sullivan expected to do. He just wanted to reclaim the money stolen from his pa, but instead ended up rescuing a feisty copper-haired woman who was on her way to marry Sullivan's dangerous enemy.

Emily McCarthy doesn't take kindly to her so-called rescue. Still, she's hoping Providence will turn her situation for good, especially when it seems Luke Sullivan may just be the man of her dreams. But Luke has crossed a vicious man, a powerful rancher not used to losing, and Emily is the prize he's unwilling to sacrifice.

My Thoughts:

Yvonne Harris just shot to the top of my list of favorite debut authors! I just finished The Vigilante’s Bride, and I had such a good time reading this book! At first, I thought I had sort of guessed the story line, but was I ever pleased to be wrong. I was immediately drawn to Emily McCarthy’s spunk and fiery spirit - especially under very undesirable circumstances! In addition, I fell in love with Luke Sullivan right along with every other women he ever met! This entire story drew me in and kept me happily entertained from beginning to end!


Harris creates a unique scenario right from the beginning as she has her main character – Emily – jumping out of the kettle and into the fire! Emily is a person who reacts strongly to every situation, and her introduction to Luke Sullivan is nothing short of spectacular. When you add a thieving ranch baron and his evil henchman to the story and the pressure they bring to bear on Emily, Luke and all the folks they care about, it doesn’t take long before you are lost in the wild-west territory of 1884. Throughout the story, readers get an inside glimpse into the spiritual struggles of the main characters as they have to sort through one catastrophe after another, and about the middle of the tale you begin to wonder who is going to survive to reach the end of the book!


I read a lot of books in rapid succession, so I am always pleased when I come across a story that seems to transport me from the present into another time and place. The Vigilante’s Bride did just that, so I am happy to recommend this book to you! I can’t wait to see what Yvonne Harris comes up with next to entertain her fans!


About the Author:


Yvonne Harris earned a BS in Education from the University of Hartford and has taught throughout New England and the mid-Atlantic. Unofficially retired from teaching, she teaches writing at Burlington County College in southern New Jersey, where she resides. She is a three-time finalist for the Golden Heart, once for The Vigilante’s Bride, which is her debut novel.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

What in the World is Going On? by Dr. David Jeremiah - REVIEWED

About the Book: (from the publisher)

Is the current economic and political crisis actually prophesied in the Bible?

If so, what are we to do about it? It is hard to piece together all this information in a way that gives a comprehensive picture of what the end times will look like. That's why so many theories abound. And that's why Dr. David Jeremiah has written What In the World Is Going On?, a unique book that cuts through the hundreds of theories to identify the essential 10 most important bible prophecies. There is no other book like this. You'll find it the ultimate study tool for understanding the future. You'll have a greater sense of comfort that, even in these crazy times, God is indeed in control. If bible prophecy as always been a mystery to you, Dr. Jeremiah's book will help you solve the mystery. At last, bible prophecy can make sense, and make a difference. What In the World Is Going On? is shocking and eye-opening but essential reading in these turbulent days.


My Thoughts:

Over the years I’ve heard Dr. Jeremiah preach via the radio many times. He expounds Scripture in a way that makes concepts easy to understand, and he is faithful to point to God’s sovereignty in every circumstance. What in the World is Going On? is a book that was written in this same, straightforward, easy-to-understand style in which Jeremiah preaches – and places the events of today’s world in the context of Bible prophecy.


I appreciate the fact that Dr. Jeremiah begins with the history of the nations embroiled in conflict and takes the reader step by step through Bible prophecy and the world events that point to Christ’s soon return. Apparently this book was written before some of the current world events occurred, (this is a reprint) and this only serves to give further evidence that Christ is indeed allowing things to line up with the prophecy in His word.


This is not an alarmist call to do anything. Dr. Jeremiah encourages others to live out your Christian life with bold assurance that God will keep His promises and that the future is nothing to be feared. Yes, there are terrible, fearful things that will eventually take place on this earth, but Christians can rest in the fact that God has told us the end of the story. We must be bold and tell the world about Christ and His redemptive love, and when asked “What in the World is Going On?” take that opportunity to tell others about Christ.


About the Author:

Dr. David Jeremiah is senior pastor of Shadow Mountain Community Church in El Cajon, California, and serves as the chancellor of San Diego Christian College. His syndicated Bible-teaching program, Turning Point, is broadcast internationally. A best-selling author, Dr. Jeremiah has also written Living with Confidence in a Chaotic World and What in the World Is Going On?as well as Escape the Coming Night and The Handwriting on the Wall, coauthored with C. C. Carlson. Dr. Jeremiah and his wife, Donna, have four children and ten grandchildren.



Friday, August 27, 2010

That's Where God Is by Dan and Ali Morrow - REVIEWED

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!


Today's Wild Card authors are:


and the book:


That’s Where God Is

David C. Cook; New edition (August 1, 2010)

***Special thanks to Audra Jennings, Senior Media Specialist, The B&B Media Group for sending me a review copy.***

ABOUT THE AUTHORS:



Dan and Ali Morrow are parents of two wonderful daughters. When they’re not writing children’s books, they like to go on adventures around their Colorado home.

Visit the authors' website.



Product Details:

List Price: $12.99
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Hardcover: 36 pages
Publisher: David C. Cook; New edition (August 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1434764346
ISBN-13: 978-1434764348

My Thoughts:

When a small boy asks his grandpa the question, “Grandpa, where is God,” Grandpa doesn’t miss the opportunity to plant a seed in his grandson’s heart. “Why don’t you look for Him this week? Then next Sunday you can tell me where He is.”


Thus begins a child’s search for God. Dan and Ali Morrow take the reader through each day of the week and the childlike discovery of God in daily events. Each discovery is accompanied by a verse in the Bible that adults can use to re-emphasize the young boy’s discovery. By the time the young boy makes it back for his next visit with Grandpa, he has lots to tell!


The Grandpa is very wise, and once again he plants a seed in his grandson’s heart by very simply explaining to him the gospel. The reader then has the wonderful experience of childlike faith as the young boy discovers the most personal place God can be found – in his own heart and life.


This is a very special book folks, and every adult should have a copy to share with the children in your life. The Scripture is a straightforward as the story itself and throws wide the door to share Christ in a way that childlike faith can grasp and cling to for eternity!


I highly recommend this book!



AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER (Click on the pictures to see them larger):











Thursday, August 26, 2010

Fear No Evil by Robin Caroll - REVIEWED



About the Book: (from the publisher)
With his father in a nursing home and his mother needing support, former Great Smoky Mountains park ranger Lincoln Vailes moves to the bayou town of Eternal Springs, Louisiana, to become a police officer. Recent college graduate and eager social worker Jade Laurent has also moved there to try and right the wrongs of an abusive past. But someone is running her car off the road and pointing guns in her direction. As Lincoln investigates her case, he uncovers ties to big-city gang warfare up north that appears to be making its evil way down south.

My Thoughts:

The past always cast shadows into the future whether it be for good or for evil. Our reaction to the events of the past often, if not always, determine the choices we make in the future. Robin Caroll takes this thought to the ultimate extreme in her latest novel, Fear No Evil. This story centers on two lives – Jade Laurent and Lincoln Vailes – both of whom have tragedy in their past and difficult situations in their present. Add to the stress of this - gang activity that has far reaching information sources and a deep-seated desire for revenge and you have another thrilling tale that takes you into the heart of the human condition and shows the reader very clearly that Christ alone can give the strength to face any circumstance.


Caroll creates believable scenarios and multi-faceted characters that combine to form a tale that will keep you reading at a frantic pace. The story weaves between the events going on in Jade and Lincoln’s lives in Louisiana and the gang wars raging in Philadelphia. Caroll convincingly draws the two story lines together in a way that has the reader gasping for breath by the end of the story! When an author can make me care deeply about the characters in multiple story lines, all the while simultaneously ratcheting up the suspense and action - I’m hooked! The elements of faith flow naturally from the character’s lives and add a depth to the story that showcases God’s grace in mercy in every circumstance of our lives – both good and evil.


Deliver Us From Evil, was my introduction to Robin Caroll’s work as well as to this series, and it is my pleasure to recommend them both to you! Check on Robin Caroll’s website to learn more about this terrific author!




About the Author:
Robin Caroll has authored eight previous books including Bayou Justice and Melody of Murder. She gives back to the writing community as conference director for the American Christian Fiction Writers organization. A proud southerner through and through, Robin lives with her husband and three daughters in Little Rock, Arkansas.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Surrender the Heart by MaryLu Tyndall - REVIEWED


You can’t know what God’s purpose is for the things that have happened until you see the end. It’s like the end of a good story miss. Everything looks real bad until you get to the last chapter.” (p. 200)


Things do indeed look very bad for Marianne Denton. Forced to marry a man she despises, her ailing mother assured of certain death if Marianne doesn’t find a way to provide the medicine she needs, and all of the family left destitute because of her father’s carelessness. Then, things get worse. Impressed onto a British navy ship (that is a tale unto itself!) just as war is about to break out between England and a fledgling United States, Marianne enters a hellish existence indeed! What can possibly become of her and her family now?


Mary Lou Tyndall has once again captured my heart and my imagination with her latest book, Surrender the Heart. Just as in all of her books before, I thought I knew where the story was headed. Then the plot began to twist and turn with such ferocity, that I had to hang on for dear life just to reach the end of the tale! If there is one thing MaryLu Tyndall knows how to do, it’s deliver an immensely satisfying, can’t-bear-to-put-it-down story! She seamlessly weaves profound spiritual truth into a story that is both action-packed and romance-filled! In short, I am THRILED to know that Surrender the Heart is only the beginning of the Surrender to Destiny series!


My mind is filled with the possibilities that Tyndall leaves before the reader by the end of this tale! I can’t wait to see what God has planned for Marianne and all of the other brave and patriotic characters introduced in Surrender!


And I promise you, that there is the heart of a sailor – or pirate – or privateer – or some such that beats within the heart of this wonderful author! Her tales upon the sea make the reader feel a breeze in your hair and the salt-water spray against your skin! Surrender the Heart captured my heart, and I hope it does yours as well!!


About the Author:

M.L. Tyndall, a Christy Award Finalist, and best-selling author of the Legacy of the King’s Pirates series is known for her adventurous historical romances filled with deep spiritual themes. She holds a degree in Math and worked as a software engineer for fifteen years before testing the waters as a writer. MaryLu currently writes full time and makes her home on the California coast with her husband, six kids, and four cats. Her passion is to write page-turning, romantic adventures that not only entertain but expose Christians to their full potential in Christ.

Visit the author's website.


Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Berenstain Bears and a Job Well Done by Jan and Mike Berenstain

It is time for a FIRST Wild Card Tour book review! If you wish to join the FIRST blog alliance, just click the button. We are a group of reviewers who tour Christian books. A Wild Card post includes a brief bio of the author and a full chapter from each book toured. The reason it is called a FIRST Wild Card Tour is that you never know if the book will be fiction, non~fiction, for young, or for old...or for somewhere in between! Enjoy your free peek into the book!

You never know when I might play a wild card on you!



Today's Wild Card authors are:




and the book:



The Berenstain Bears and A Job Well Done

Zonderkidz (April 9, 2010)

***Special thanks to Krista Ocier of Zondervan for sending me a review copy.***



ABOUT THE AUTHORS:



Stan and Jan Berenstain introduced the first Berenstain Bear books in 1962. Mike Berenstain grew up watching his parents work together to write about and draw these lovable bears. Eventually he started drawing and writing about them too. Mike is married to Andrea, and they have three children. They live in Pennsylvania, in an area that looks a lot like Bear Country.


Visit the authors' website.

Product Details:

List Price: $3.99
Reading level: Ages 4-8
Paperback: 32 pages
Publisher: Zonderkidz (April 9, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0310712548
ISBN-13: 978-0310712541



My Thoughts:
I have many, many happy memories from my childhood that include the Berenstain Bears! What a joy it is to see the characters teaching of Mama and Papa beard teaching Bible principles to to their family! This bear family is more precious than ever to me, and I can't wait to share this new book with others! I hope you will share this wonderful bear family with all of the children in your life!

AND NOW...THE FIRST CHAPTER:




Monday, August 23, 2010

Christian Fiction Blog Alliance presents: Masquerade by Nancy Moser - REVIEWED


About the Book:(from the publisher)

They risk it all for adventure and romance,
but find that love only flourishes in truth...

1886. Charlotte Gleason embarks from England with conflicting emotions. She is headed for New York to marry one of America's wealthiest heirs--a man she has never even met. When her doubts gain the upper hand, she swaps identities with her maid Dora. She wants a chance at "real life," even if it means giving up financial security. For Charlotte, it's a risk she's willing to take. But what begins as the whim of a spoiled rich girl becomes a test of survival beyond her blackest nightmare.


For Dora, it's the chance of a lifetime. She is thrust into a fairy tale amid ball gowns and lavish mansions, yet is tormented by the possibility of discovery--and humiliation. And what of the man who believes she is indeed his intended? Is this what her heart truly longs for?

My Thoughts:

“It takes courage to flee the known and step toward the unknown. Sometimes I wonder what we are fleeing.” (p.75)


Nancy Moser takes a most creative look at the simple act of faith – stepping toward the unknown – in her latest book, Masquerade. Yet there is nothing at all simple about the plot she devised to explore this most fundamental truth! The idea of two women, one a spoiled, titled Englishwoman, Charlotte Gleason, and one who has grown up in servitude, Dora Conners, swapping identities is unfathomable! Yet Moser not only makes this masquerade believable, she makes it seem almost necessary. The result of this creativity is a tale that will sweep your imagination to a time in our country where everything seemed possible for those willing to work hard and risk everything. Was Charlotte Gleason willing? Was it possible for Dora Conners?


The answer is a resounding yes! But only in a way that Nancy Moser could imagine! Moser takes history and uses its social strata, boundaries and economic class divisions to create characters that the reader can believe and care about. By the time Dora and Charlotte complete their journey to New York it is apparent that both of them have the spirit to try the unthinkable, but they lack the wisdom to understand the consequences of their choices. The consequences, well, they must suffer those first-hand and pray – literally – for God to help them navigate the mess they have made for themselves!


I don’t know when I’ve enjoyed one of Moser’s stories more! At first I thought it would never be possible to care much about Charlotte at all, and it was pity that I felt for Dora. Yet by stories end, I was applauding both these ladies for the obstacles they’d overcome and the spirit with which they’d endured unexpected hardship. I also wound up pleasantly surprised by the depth that some of the wealthy characters hid beneath their fa├žade, and I loved the real Miss Hathaway (you’ll have to read the story to find out who this is!) a great deal for her blunt wisdom and common sense!


There are so many things I could say about this book, but I don’t want to spoil one twist or turn in this very creative plot! Just suffice it to say that Masquerade holds enough historic accuracy to make the story authentic, enough romance to keep you guessing and enough truth about the human spirit to make you appreciate God’s precious care over each of our lives!


I’ll end with another quote from one of Moser’s memorable characters: “No one is the same person they started out to be. That’s the way of life…You didn’t plan to be here, but here you are, different from what you sought to be…” (p.360)

About the Author:
Nancy Moser is the author of three inspirational humor books and a eighteen novels, including Mozart's Sister, Just Jane, and Time Lottery, a Christy Award winner. She is an inspirational speaker, giving seminars around the country. She has earned a degree in architecture; run a business with her husband; traveled extensively in Europe; and has performed in various theaters, symphonies, and choirs. She and her husband have three grown children and make their home in the Midwest. Read more about her books at www.nancymoser.com.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Monster Inside My Daugter - Airs on Animal Planet August 25th!

Monster Inside My Daughter

“I feel a pulse,” one of the medics said.


The paramedics worked feverishly on Manisha to make sure she was still alive. My beautiful seven-year-old daughter from Nepal lay on the floor unconscious at the O’Connell Center of the University of Florida.


“Has she ever had a seizure?” another one asked.


“No, no,” I said in bewilderment. Manisha rolled over and vomited.


One emotion consumed me: Fear. The enormity of single parenting hit me like lightening.


I cried out, “Where are you, God? I feel so alone.”


After hooking up stabilizing IVs, Manisha was whisked off in an ambulance to Shands Teaching Hospital. I found a pay phone and called my mother. Her first comment was, “Do you know what day this is?”


I remembered—September 19. Four years to the day and almost to the hour, my father had died of a brain tumor. It was about 5:00 p.m. My shattered world continued to close in on me. A short time later my worst fears were confirmed.


“There is something on the CAT scan. We have a called a neurologist,” I heard the nurse say.


“No, no, no,” every cell in my body cried out. “God, you can’t let this happen. Not again!”


But God was silent. The next nine days of hospitalization were filled with tests—MRI, gallium scan, spinal tap, TB test, HIV test, numerous blood draws, and too many questions and not enough answers by doctors doing their daily rounds with medical students in tow. Manisha had what in medical parlance is called a “zebra.”


As the days passed in the hospital, I asked God for two things that humanly speaking seemed impossible. I prayed first that the doctors would not have to do surgery. I couldn’t bear the thought of seeing Manisha’s beautiful thick, curly black hair shaved off. The ugly scars of surgery still lingered in my mind from my dad’s brain surgery. And I prayed that whatever was in Manisha’s head would not be cancerous. I had asked God to heal my father of a brain tumor and he died. Could I trust God for Manisha’s healing?


It was critical that the doctor’s make the correct diagnosis. The wrong treatment could kill her. Did she have a malignant brain tumor or a worm inside her head? Manisha had been adopted by me from Nepal at the age of three—old enough to be exposed to the extreme poverty of Nepal and lack of clean drinking water. 57.1 percent of the water in Nepal is considered unsatisfactory for human consumption, contaminated with feces.


Manisha’s condition turned out to be caused by a tapeworm infection of the brain—the most common parasitic infection of the nervous system. The larvae can travel anywhere in the body—the muscles, brain, eye, and other structures. The condition, known as neurocysticercosis, is still relatively rare in this country, but is appearing more on the radar as part of the differential diagnosis for seizures.


Thankfully, twelve years later, Manisha is a healthy, well-adjusted 19-year-old finishing her A.A. degree at Santa Fe College—six months ahead of schedule.


Why did God allow this nightmare to happen? I don’t know why God allows the hard things in our lives, but I do know God never wastes anything. I hope writing about neurocysticercosis today will bring awareness to this very preventable disease. International adoptive parents and travelers to the developing world should seek appropriate medical care upon returning to the U.S. if they have been exposed to poor sanitary conditions or contaminated water.


In spite of the trials of single parenting, the years following that dreadful day of September 19, 1994, have been filled with life and joy. Manisha soon will be leaving home to make her own way in the world and I reflect on her middle name Hope—with God, there is always hope, and for that I am thankful.


For more on Manisha’s story, be sure to watch Animal Planet’s “Monsters Inside Me” on August 25, 10-11pm EST. The book, Children of Dreams tells the complete story, available at Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, and your local bookstores.


Lorilyn Roberts graduated Magna Cum Laude from the University of Alabama and is currently working on her Master of Arts in Creative Writing from Perelandra College. As a Certified Court Reporter, Lorilyn has made contributions to the National Court Reporters Association Journal. She provides real-time broadcast captioning for television. Lorilyn’s first book, The Donkey and the King, is a beautifully illustrated children's book. She also co-leads Word Weavers in Gainesville, FL. When not writing, taking graduate classes, or closed captioning for television/web, Lorilyn homeschools her younger daughter, Joy.

Lorilyn is offering a drawing for a free copy of Children of Dreams on her website and blog. The drawing will be on September 1, 2010. Go to the website for details.

Website address: http://www.lorilynroberts.com/blog.html

Blog address: http://lorilynroberts.blogspot.com/

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Chrissie's Shell by Brooke Keith Illustrated by Mary Bausman - REVIEWED

About the Book: (from the publisher)

Chrissie is a little turtle with a big problem: she believes her shell is empty. She spends her days comparing herself with other animals in the forest and imagining what it would be like to be them, only to end up disappointed again and again when she finds she cannot transform herself into someone new.


At last, when Chrissie is ready to give up all hope, she has a conversation with God. She begs him to make her into a creature like the wonderful animals she has seen, but God has something better in mind. Will Chrissie finally see herself as God sees her? Will she realize that her shell is not empty after all and that God loves her just the way she is?


I praise you for I am…wonderfully made. Psalm 139:14 NIV


My Thoughts:

“…she imagined what I would be like to do the thing she could not do.” (p. 17)


Oh dear reader! The truth found in the picture book, Chrissie’s Shell is very applicable to anyone – no matter your age! Chrissie is a little turtle who is wrestling with a big problem – accepting herself as one of God’s precious creations. Chrissie spends a lot of time trying to be something she is not, never realizing that she was created for a specific purpose as unique as all of the other animals in the forest for whom she holds such great admiration. When she finally cries out to God in her frustration, He lovingly and tenderly shows her that she is a precious as all of the other animals in the forest.


This timeless story is beautifully illustrated with lots of whimsical forest animals that will quickly become some of your child’s favorite companions at story time! Parents and child care providers will have opportunities to teach little ones just how precious they are in God’s sight as well as teaching them that they don’t have to spend their time trying to be someone they’re not. It’s never too early to begin to learn this lesson!


I highly recommend Chrissie’s Shell as an excellent addition to any library!



About the Author: Brooke Keith

Brooke Keith's poetry for children has appeared in children's magazines and storybooks around the world. She is a devotional and family writer for the Christian Broadcasting Network, a columnist for War Cry Magazine and a regular contributor for many well-loved Christian magazines such as Mature Living, Christianity Today, and Young Salvationist among others. When Brooke isn't writing, she is a volunteer and mentor for the Hugs and Hope Foundation. She lives with her husband Chris and their four children, Alex, Brock, Emily and baby Jack in Lula, Georgia.


About the Illustrator: Mary Bausman

Mary Bausman has illustrated for many major publishers in the United States and Canada. Her main focus is developing art and promotional materials for libraries, schools, and religious organizations. Mary and her husband, Cal, have their own graphic arts studio, Owl Mountain Graphics. They enjoy working from their farm in rural Maryland, surrounded by their beloved sons and their families, as well as their dogs, cats, horses and nature.



Friday, August 20, 2010

Amish Proverbs by Suzanne Woods Fisher - A CONTEST! A GIVE AWAY AND MORE!


About the book: (from the publisher)
Simplify your life with Amish wisdom

Through firsthand research and personal relationships, Suzanne Woods Fisher has collected more than 200 proverbs that uncover the rich heritage, folklore, faith, values, history, and essence of the Plain People. These proverbs serve as teaching tools and maxims for practical living--but they're not just for the Amish. They're for anyone who seeks God's wisdom and truth for everyday circumstances.

Ranging from the simple to the profound, from the serious to the humorous, these sayings will stick with you through life's joys and sorrows. With beautiful full-color photos throughout, Amish Proverbs is the perfect gift for any occasion.


MY THOUGHTS:

I don’t believe in marking in books, so I mark the pages and passages I like with pieces of paper – preferably a brightly colored piece of paper. Amish Proverbs by Suzanne Woods Fisher is a book that closely resembles a porcupine it has so many pieces of paper sticking out of it!! Never has such a little book contained so much to enjoy, so many truths to think about, and so many positive things to put into practice!


“If you sense your faith is unraveling, go back to where you dropped the thread of obedience.” (p. 58)


“Bibles that are coming apart usually belong to people who are not.” (p. 47)

“One thing you can learn by watching the clock is that it passes time by keeping its hands busy.” (p. 22)


“There is one thing more exasperating than a wife who can cook and won’t, and that’s a wife who can’t cook and will.” (p. 201)


The book is divided into eleven topics that include time, money, faith, children & family, handling adversity and work ethic to name just a few. Each category contains a brief explanation of the Amish life and how their broad viewpoint on that particular was formed and is lived out in daily practice. The reader learns a lot in a succinct and entertaining way about the truths of Amish life and how those truths can positively impact any Christian’s life.


This is a treasure of a book, and one that you will want to own and share!


I have an extra copy of this book to share!! Please leave your name and a comment along with contact information on this post, and you can win a free copy of this book!!


About the Author:

Suzanne Woods Fisher is the CBA bestselling author of The Choice, The Waiting, Amish Peace, and Amish Proverbs. Her interest in the Anabaptist cultures can be directly traced to her grandfather, W. D. Benedict, who was raised in the Old Order German Baptist Brethren Church in Franklin County, Pennsylvania. Benedict eventually became publisher of Christianity Today magazine. Suzanne is the host of a radio show called Amish Wisdom and her work has appeared in many magazines. She lives in California. Find out more about Suzanne at www.suzannewoodsfisher.com







ANOTHER CONTEST!! WIN A KINDLE! AND MORE!

Suzanne's Amish Proverbs just hit the shelves. To celebrate she's giving away a KINDLE and throwing a party! Let the fun begin. See below for info and links.

Find out more about the book, Suzanne and the blog tour here.

Enter Suzanne Woods Fisher's Simple Wisdom KINDLE Giveaway!


One Grand Prize winner will receive a Kindle preloaded with Suzanne Woods Fisher titles. The Prize Pack (valued at over $205.00) includes:

* A brand new KINDLE, Free 3G, 6", Latest Generation

* Amish Peace by Suzanne Woods Fisher

* The Choice by Suzanne Woods Fisher

To enter, simply click on the icons below to fill out the entry form, then tell 5 or more friends about the contest.

Oh, and enter soon! Winner will be announced on September 1st.




Thursday, August 19, 2010

The Crimson Cipher by Susan Page Davis - REVIEWED

This week, the


Christian Fiction Blog Alliance


is introducing


The Crimson Cipher
Summerside Press (July 1, 2010)


by
Susan Page Davis




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:





From Susan: I've always loved reading, history, and horses. These things come together in several of my historical books. My young adult novel, Sarah's Long Ride, also spotlights horses and the rugged sport of endurance riding, as does the contemporary romance Trail to Justice. I took a vocational course in horseshoeing after earning a bachelor's degree in history. I don't shoe horses anymore, but the experience has come in handy in writing my books.



Another longtime hobby of mine is genealogy, which has led me down many fascinating paths. I'm proud to be a DAR member! Some of Jim's and my quirkier ancestors have inspired fictional characters.



For many years I worked for the Central Maine Morning Sentinel as a freelancer, covering local government, school board meetings, business news, fires, auto accidents, and other local events, including a murder trial. I've also written many profiles and features for the newspaper and its special sections. This experience was a great help in developing fictional characters and writing realistic scenes. I also published nonfiction articles in several magazines and had several short stories appear in Woman's World, Grit, and Alfred Hitchcock's Mystery Magazine.



My husband, Jim, and I moved to his birth state, Oregon, for a while after we were married, but decided to move back to Maine and be near my family. We're so glad we did. It allowed our six children to grow up feeling close to their cousins and grandparents, and some of Jim's family have even moved to Maine!



Our children are all home-schooled. The two youngest are still learning at home. Jim recently retired from his vocation as an editor at a daily newspaper, and we’ve moved from Maine to Kentucky.





ABOUT THE BOOK



IT'S 1915, AND EMMA SHUSTER HAS FAR TOO MUCH ON HER MIND TO ENTERTAIN NOTIONS OF ROMANCE...


A female Navy cryptographer seeks to save lives...and uncover her father’s killers.



In 1915, German sympathizers escalated acts of sabotage in the United States to keep the nation from joining in the war. With enemies lurking at every turn, whom can Emma trust? Is romance the true motive behind her tow suitors advances? Or could one-or both of them-have traitorous intentions in mind?



Following the mysterious murder of Emma Shuster’s father, Lt. John Patterson invites Emma to become a Navy cryptographer because of the expertise she gained in helping her father develop a cipher system.



Emma races to discover the nefarious plans of her country's foes and unmask their leader before others are killed. She finds new strength in her faith as she strives to outwit her adversary, known only as Kobold - German for goblin.



And yet, her greatest challenge may be deciphering the cryptic messages her heart sends whenever she encounters a certain navy lieutenant... Can Emma and John find love in the midst of turmoil as America plunges toward war?



If you would like to read the first chapter of The Crimson Cipher, go HERE.

MY THOUGHTS:

I’ve never given much thought to the Signal Corps and the role they play in our military – past and present. I’m so glad Susan Page Davis did! The result? The Crimson Cipher! The story starts out with a bang, and it really maintains a element of urgency and secrecy throughout the story. Emma Schuster is the daughter of a man who is hard at work on a machine that will make ciphers easier to decode, as well as an easy means to encode messages from others. She has to go to work for the Signal Corps rather unexpectedly, and what she finds when she begins is that she really has a gift for this type of work! However, in 1915, with the Germans on the prowl, it turns out to be a very dangerous line of work!


When I began this book, I couldn’t call to mind the other book of Davis’ I had read, and I soon figured out why…it was so totally different than The Crimson Cipher! The Sherriff’s Surrender was my introduction to Davis’ work, and it was thoroughly entertaining! So now I am even more impressed with her work, because she has shifted to a more modern venue for her romantic suspense, and once again has kept me happily reading!


I think readers will enjoy Emma’s quiet faith and her inner strength that keeps her going in the face of uncertain circumstances. She has to face an entire boardinghouse full of strangers, a new career move and the dangers of decoding messages during a very uncertain time! I really admired her character! I enjoyed “meeting” the other women at the boarding house as well as the folks that she worked with at the Signal Corps. I do wish I was good at decoding messages/puzzles such as these…but alas! I must have my writing in plain English!


But what a fascinating field to work in and what an exciting time in history! The Crimson Cipher is a good read, folks, and Susan Page Davis is a talented writer indeed to take folks to such different times and places in history! Enjoy the tale!!