Thursday, June 25, 2020

What Momma Left Behind by Cindy K. Sproles - REVIEW

About the Book:
In the face of overwhelming obstacles, she'll need courage, grit, and a tender heart

Worie Dressar is seventeen years old when influenza and typhoid ravage her Appalachian Mountain community in 1877, leaving behind a growing number of orphaned children with no way to care for themselves. Worie's mother has been secretly feeding several of these little ones on Sourwood Mountain. But when tragedy strikes, Worie is left to figure out why and how she was caring for them.

Plagued with two good-for-nothing brothers--one greedy and the other a drunkard--Worie must fight to save her home and the children now in her begrudging care. Along the way, she discovers the beauty of unconditional love and the power of forgiveness as she cares for all of Momma's children.

About the Author:
Cindy K. Sproles is the cofounder of Christian Devotions Ministries. An author, storyteller, and popular speaker, Cindy teaches at writers conferences across the country and directs the Asheville Christian Writers Conference in North Carolina. Editor of and managing editor for Straight Street Books and SonRise Devotionals, Cindy has a BA in business and journalism and lives in the mountains of East Tennessee with her family.
My Thoughts:
"Truth can be hard to swaller, and right now I was chokin."  (p.212)
Worrie Dressar's simple life in a remote Appalachian Mountain community was not without its problems.  It turns out that the definition of family was a vast as the mountains themselves.  Worrie has to go through hell and back before that truth becomes known to her.  Her journey to that truth costs her more than she wants to pay, and she must decide, moment by moment, if it is worth the cost.
When I first picked up this novel, I assumed that it would address the ravages of typhoid in rural Appalachia.  Technically, it does, but not in a way I'd have ever dreamed!  Cindy Sproles takes the reader on a very delicate spiritual and emotional journey through the harshest physical, circumstantial circumstances imaginable!  She develops her characters in such a way, that, even though the circumstances are terrible, you are able to feel the impact of the choices Worrie is forced to make as the story unfolds.
There is a strength and wisdom in Worrie's actions that is beyond her years.  Yet, when it is most impactful, she is able to express her overwhelming emotions in a way that will twist your heart in two! Once I recognized what the true treasure was in the story, I found out that I'd misjudged that too.  Sproles carefully weaves depth and breadth into her characters and story line that makes every chapter feel like something new.  
I highly recommend this book!  You will come away satisfied, challenged, and examining your own heart. I think in light of the pandemic and racial unrest in our country right now, this story packs a greater emotional punch!  Enjoy this story!  Prepare your heart to be touched and changed!

Saturday, June 13, 2020

Cross Shadow by Andrew Huff - REVIEW and GIVE AWAY!

About the Book:
All journalist Christine Lewis wants is the truth. All pastor John Cross wants is to avoid it.

Former CIA agent turned evangelical pastor John Cross is busy caring for the small community of believers he ministers to in Virginia. Journalist Christine Lewis is busy with the demand for her talents from top news agencies in New York City. Neither has any time left for their relationship, which began eight months before when they paired up to prevent the detonation of a chemical bomb in the nation's capital.

But when Christine hears that her stepbrother has been arrested for murder in Texas, they team up again to discover the truth about the crime. Untangling a web of conspiracy, the couple finds themselves in the center of another dangerous situation-and in trouble far deeper than they expected.

With an assassin on the loose, a trusted colleague acting as a double agent, and unreliable artificial intelligence connected to mercenaries who have Cross on their hit list, these two may not get out of the Lone Star State alive.

About the Author:
Huff spent ten years in local church ministry as a youth pastor and creative arts pastor before pursuing God’s calling into creative storytelling and media production as the product director at Igniter Media, a church media company (

He is a two-time finalist in the American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW) Genesis Contest for unpublished authors (2014, 2017) and also won the best screenplay award at the 2015 48 Hour Film Festival in Richmond, VA. A Cross to Kill and Cross Shadow in the Shepherd Suspense series are his first releases.

Huff holds a bachelor of science in religion degree from Liberty University and a master of arts in Christian education from Dallas Theological Seminary. He resides in Plano, TX, with his beautiful wife, Jae, and their two boys.

Learn more Andrew Huff and the Shepherd Suspense novels at He can also be found on Facebook (@huffwrites), Twitter (@andrewjohnhuff) and Instagram (@andyhuff).

My Thoughts:
"Come on. Let's get you cleaned up.  We've got a lot to talk about."  (p, 176)

Christine Lewis finds herself cleaning up a LOT more than any news reporter I've ever heard of!  If I were her, I'd pick a less dangerous profession!  John Cross, her boyfriend, possesses an every stranger combination of skill sets, and seems to be perfectly suited to her very aggressive and  dangerous reporting gigs!

This time, Christine's reporting takes a backseat, because she finds herself trying to save her step brother from being wrongfully charged with murder.  Her reporting skills, combined with John's endless protective and crafty intelligence gathering capabilities, prove to be an unstoppable force to be reckoned with.  As they uncover the depth and breadth of the people determined to profit off the lives of others - alive or dead - it takes every ounce of determination and faith they can muster to survive everything that comes their way.

All along the way, both Christine and John have their personal faith challenged in ways that cause them both heartache and joy.  Anyone brave enough to open this novel better hang on for the ride!  This is a tale that begins with a subtle uptick in danger, but by the end of the novel, the reader is breathless and in need of a good nap!  There are no end to the twists and turns in this plot line! As this is book two of the series, I am now anxious to go back and enjoy the first novel so I'll be ready for the next one!

This is a series that anyone who enjoys a great thrill ride will thoroughly enjoy! I highly recommend this trilogy!! I can't wait to see what happens next!

You can win your own copy of Cross Shadow!  Leave a message in the comments, and I will contact the winner next week!