Monday, September 16, 2019

VOW OF JUSTICE by LYNETTE EASON

It is no secret that I enjoy reading suspense novels. This author is always one of my go to authors when wanting a book filled with intrigue. She writes characters that pop off the page with realism. I have been waiting for this book and couldn't wait to dive in.

When someone has done something wrong to us, we think for a moment how sweet it would be to get revenge. Of course we don't take action. In this fast paced story we find Special Agent Linc against the wall when he loses his partner. You can feel his anger and disbelief that someone was able to kill his partner.

I loved how Allie's past becomes the center of the story and the secrets that unravel as time goes on. There is more to Allie than Linc knew. Her secrets start to pile up and leaves Linc wondering if he really ever knew her. The plot is exceptional and intense with revenge as a real possibility for one of the characters.

Allie is in deep with undercover work and needs help to find her way  to the truth. Her journey is one that is hard at times as she has to accept that it is not her place to take action against someone. Can Linc and Allie find a way to work together? The story is a roller coaster ride as we read how revenge can take over if they aren't grounded in faith. It is a wonderful story that I loved reading and was filled with many surprises.

I received a copy of this book from the Early Reviewers Program of LibraryThing. The review is my own opinion.
YOU BELONG WITH ME by TARI FARIS

I love reading debut books by an author. It is exciting to see how their writing is and get familiar with their style. In this story we are taken into a small town set in Michigan. The people are friendly and seem to help each other out. Hannah is a nice character that hasn't had the best life growing up. She has always wanted to belong somewhere and to feel the love of a family.

The author has written a story that is emotional and filled with great characters. We all want to belong somewhere and that is at the heart of this book. Luke is another example of overcoming his upbringing in foster care to a man who desires to have a family. There is some background on each character that is just below the surface which the author explores over the course of the story.

I loved the love triangle and thought it was written with realism. I know who I am rooting for and couldn't read fast enough to find out what happens. This is the kind of story you can get lost in and forget everything around you. I became invested in the characters and loved how real they seemed. Get ready for a surprise in the story that will make you say, "Oh my"

I am glad that I have a new author to read and look forward to the next book she writes. This book may be her debut but her writing skills far surpass many authors that have been  writing for awhile. Get ready for an adventure filled with family, faith and hard decisions.

I received a copy of this book from the Early Reviewers Program from LibraryThing. The review is my own opinion.
Tidbits and Pearls FB Banner

About the Book

Book: Tidbits and Pearls
Author: Ladonna Shanks
Genre: Non-Fiction, Christian personal growth
Release Date: April 15, 2019
Tidbits and Pearls CoverHow often do you truly see that life is full of everyday blessings from God? Our Creator is present in our lives—even when we don’t realize it—and it is part of His plan that we have friendship and relationship with Him. So how does one live life with God, the omnipotent, omniscient Creator of all?
In Tidbits and Pearls, Ladonna Shanks shares incidents from her life, recounting them in a way that touches the heart and enriches the lives of those who read these personal stories. Her insights and lessons learned offer profound yet simple wisdom, gleaned from her seventy-plus years of life experience. Many of her essays focus on her family—her children and “grandgirls”—as well as her personal gardening business. Her faith shines through the narrative as a shining light for others to follow.
Humankind was created to have a relationship with their Creator, and everyday life presents the opportunities for that to occur. Tidbits and Pearls is one woman’s record of how God manifests himself in daily life, with the challenge to look beyond the physical and seek the spiritual aspect of life. So take the first step in this journey and be honest with yourself and with God, for you are His instrument, and without Him you can do nothing.


About the Author

Ladonnna ShanksLadonna Shanks was born and raised in Oregon. She graduated from Lebanon High School in 1962, married, and became mother to a son and three daughters. After more than thirty years as a stay-at-home mom, she began working in a garden nursery. That led to establishing her own gardening business. Now in her mid-seventies, she continues to operate the business as it enters its seventeenth season.

More from Ladonna

When people ask me how long it took to write Tidbits and Pearls, I usually tell them, “It took a lifetime.”  As a senior citizen, I had to live it before I could write of it–of life and the living of it; of God’s desire for friendship; of His presence in everyday life; of the opportunities given to learn, to grow, and to experience Him.
Tidbits and Pearls began as a blog several years ago, based on my personal experiences as God walks with me and teaches me. My desire is to share Him–with those who believe and those who don’t; to those in a church and those who aren’t; to many, to but one. In this compilation of posts, my goal is to challenge the reader to think beyond the physical into the spiritual, to consider the brevity of this life when compared to the eternal, to think of things in a way perhaps never thought of before, to look Godward.
My walk with God began as a very little girl with no concept of the reality of Him and His love. As a seventy-something woman, He is a part of my daily life, my anchor, the foundation of my being. He is my reason for living.
I am honored to deliver His message—God is love; He created humankind for friendship and relationship; there is a point and purpose to all things.


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Oh the struggles of having a relationship is something I tremble at sometimes.  I'm not very good at making friends and find myself as a loner walking this earth. In this book the author shows us how to have the most important relationship you can have. That relationship is with God. I may feel alone but I'm never really alone as I continue to deepen my relationship with Him. He accepts us for who we are and loves us unconditionally. This relationship is far more valuable than any I could have. 

I liked how the author shared stories from her life. One particular story hit home with me. My mother had Alzheimer like her mother did. Our family was very dysfunctional and still is today. When I found out about my mother, I didn't hesitate to step up and help with her care. It didn't matter that my parents abused me and never said they loved me. What mattered to me was that my mother needed me and I would do anything to grasp a piece of a relationship with her. I took a lot of hateful words from my dad as I stepped in to help but it never swayed me to walk away. When she passed away suddenly, two of my brothers and I were in the same place at the same time with our dad. We didn't immediately rekindle our relationship between each other, but it did make us realize how precious life is. 

The stories the author shares are fun to read and give readers  pause to think about all the relationships they have. We need to enjoy every minute  and learn from our hurtful words or bad judgment.  I loved getting to know the author and her family better. She shares triumphs and encourages others to not take anything for granted. She has a heart for others and finds ways to bless people. Her insights about her children and grandchildren are an example of a person who enjoys family and life. 

Cherished moments are ones that touch you and give you fond memories. I loved how the author shares moments such as a hug from her child when they were young. I remember times when my boys were little. I treasure each moment I have spent with them and appreciate how they still give me a hug and say they love me even though they are adults now. 

Each chapter is filled with wonderful, encouraging words that I couldn't get enough of. If you are feeling down, grab this book and get a lift from God. This book now has a permanent place on my bookshelf. I will take it down to reread again and be reminded to "leave an invisible mark , one not seen with the physical but with the spiritual eye, a mark that is eternal.

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.






Blog Stops

Through the Fire Blogs, September 7 (Author Interview)
SusanK. Beatty, Author, September 9 (Author Interview)
Wishful Endings, September 11 (Author Interview)
janicesbookreviews, September 12
A Reader’s Brain, September 13
A Baker’s Perspective , September 14(Author Interview)
Inklings and notions , September 15
Texas Book-aholic, September 16
Just the Write Escape, September 17

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Ladonna is giving away a grand prize of a $50 Amazon gift card!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Sunday, September 15, 2019

DIAMOND IN THE ROUGH by JEN TURANO

After rolling on the floor laughing I am now able to collect my thoughts. Poppy is hysterical and so full of life that I would love to  be her friend. She has a big task ahead of her to help her family out which proves to be a journey she will never forget.

The opening pages of the book set the tone for the delightful writing talent of the author. She is known for witty and charming characters. Poppy is hands down my favorite and she is written with pure inspiration and charm. I could picture Poppy as she and her dashing partner danced around the room. Leave it to Poppy to make a scene at a gala with important and influential people .

Reginald is a very distinguished gentleman who Poppy's grandmother sets her sights on to help Poppy. Oh what a deal Poppy is getting into because of her grandmother. The banter between Poppy and her grandmother is priceless. Two very determined women trying to get the upper hand on the other. The author has out done herself with this wonderful story filled with laughs, family values and faith.

As Poppy matures and becomes more refined I felt she finally realized how loved she was by many. Her grandmother wants her to marry for money. Poppy has admirers but will she do what her grandmother wants? This is one story that I couldn't put down because it was funny yet reminiscent of someone finding their place in life.

As with all her books, the author gives us wonderful characters and leaves us with a wonderful message that stays with you forever. I love the faith elements in the story and reading how a young woman named Poppy learned to believe in herself.

I received a copy of this book from the publisher and author. The review is my own opinion.
samson and Amish Delilah FB Banner

About this Book

Book: Samson & Amish Delilah
Author: Thomas Nye
Genre: Christian Amish Fiction
Release Date: August 19, 2019
Samson and Amish DelilahEveryone in America has fallen in love with Delilah, leading lady in a bestselling Amish novel. When media giants discover that Delilah is a real person, the pursuit is on. Dave joins the search not realizing that by finding her, he would fall into the story and become Samson.




About the Author

ThomasThomas Nye writes novels about horses and Amish life, with a touch of romance, and a foundation of faith in Christ. He and his wife, Shari, live on her family farm where they raised five children. Their six grandchildren love to visit Karma and Karla, a team of draft horses which Thomas purchased from an Amish friend. Walking a mail route for the U.S. Postal Service keeps Thomas close to nature and affords him many quiet hours which he uses to dream up novels. Over three decades of friendships with Amish neighbors has revealed a simple wisdom that he weaves into his writing.

More from Thomas

Most authors agree that during the course of writing a novel, the characters seem to come alive and emerge with personality traits we ourselves didn’t originally plan to give them. Not only did the lead characters of Samson and Delilah take on a life of their own, they also pulled the story in a direction I never planned to go.
Samson and Amish Delilah is a book about a book. You will soon discover that the characters are reading along with you. They even try to guess the ending and have discussions about it. As I worked on the final few chapters, I could almost feel Samson and Delilah urging me forward, as though they needed me to write out solutions to the issues they were facing. I could almost hear them calling to me, “Please—finish this book—we want the world to hear our story.”
Maybe all of this is just me projecting my feelings on them. LOL. Either way, I’ve gotten to know Samson and Delilah pretty well and I’m sure they would want you to smile, laugh, cry, and learn about the power of forgiveness along with them.
Thomas Nye
P.S. It so happens that I feel Samson and Delilah nudging me forward with a follow-up novel. Wink, wink.



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This book is a wonderful example of learning to forgive yourself for mistakes you have made in the past. We can’t change the past, but we can make the present better. In this book the two main characters each have a past as teenagers that they have regrets from. I loved the way the author brought them together in a story that spans from the teenage years to the present.

I thought the writing was good and Delilah was a wonderful  young woman who has tried to overcome a mistake she made in the past. Living the Amish life can be difficult for young people and Delilah has lived with a secret for a long time. When a book comes out about an Amish girl named Delilah , people go crazy trying to find who the real Delilah is from the book.

Dave has been sent to find the Delilah that was written in the book and get a picture of her. Most of us know that the Amish don’t allow pictures taken of them but Dave is determined to succeed because he needs the money. I found it quite interesting how the author used Princess Diana in comparison with Delilah. The paparazzi were relentless in pursuing Princess Diana and the same thing  was happening with Delilah. The fascination of this young woman was spreading rapidly and I could feel the tension when the paparazzi were getting close to identifying Delilah.

I liked the way the author tells a story of forgiveness loosely using a story from the Bible. It is easy to understand how something from your past can affect your future in this story of forgiveness and faith. Forgiveness is one of the hardest things to overcome. I have found that when you do forgive, you feel a big weight has been lifted off your shoulder. I am looking forward to the follow up book that the author has hinted at. 

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

For Him and My Family, September 7
Batya’s Bits, September 7
Moments, September 8
D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, September 9
Bigreadersite, September 10
Pause for Tales, September 12
Maureen’s Musings, September 12
Emily Yager, September 13
Older & Smarter?, September 14
Texas Book-aholic, September 15
Mary Hake, September 15
janicesbookreviews, September 17
Inklings and notions, September 18
For The Love of Books, September 18
A Reader’s Brain, September 19

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Thomas is giving away a Thomas Nye Gift Box, which includes four books by Thomas Nye: Samson and Amish Delilah, Under the Heavens, Amish Park, and Plain Everyday Heroes!! Along with bookmarkers and an Amish designed coloring book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Roses redepmtion FB BannerAbout the Book 

Book: Rose’s Redemption
Author: Donna L. H. Smith
Genre: Christian Western
Release Date: November, 2018
Roses Redemption coverA Former Dance Hall Girl. A Handsome Young Doctor. Can Rose overcome her past? That’s Rose’s Redemption
Rose Rhodes changed not only her name after the tornado; she changed her outward appearance. No more was she Rosalie O’Roarke, former dance hall girl. She loves her new work as a nurse-in-training to handsome Doctor Scott Allison. As Scott and Rose’s relationship begins to change from professional to personal, they must deal with figures from Rose’s past who make life anything but easy. Rose is concerned that the town will discover her dance hall girl past, especially when Jake Thomas, the man who viciously beat her, asks all over town where Rosalie O’Roarke went. But both Rose and Scott are in for surprise encounters with Christ that will change their lives forever and help them see His plan for them. In fact, they will see God at work all over New Boston.
Rose’s Redemption won second place in the 2017 Golden Leaf Award at the Advance Novelist Retreat and was a finalist in the American Christian Fiction Writers’ Phoenix Rattler Contest.

Click here to grab your copy.

About the Author

Donna SmithDonna L.H. Smith is a Kansas prairie girl transplanted to Lancaster County, PA. She is a graduate of Christian Writer’s Guild Craftsman program and holds two college degrees, both B.S. and M.A. in Mass Communication. She’s been married to a wonderful man named Kirby for thirty years. Her debut novel, Meghan’s Choice, made the finals of both the Selah and Will Rogers Medallion Awards. Rose’s Redemption, the sequel, also made the Selah Award finals in 2019. She blogs, speaks at workshops and holds inner healing retreats. Although she is at an age where many begin slowing down, she wouldn’t think of it. She served as Managing Editor of www.almostanauthor.com, an award-winning website for writers. She continues to serve as ACFW (American Christian Fiction Writers) Mid-Atlantic Zone Director. She is also a member of AWSA’s Protégé program (Advanced Writers & Speaker’s Association).

More from Donna

Rose’s Redemption is the second book in the Known by Heart series. There were interesting challenges to this book.
First, how to change a rascal of an antagonist from Meghan’s Choice, to the romantic hero of Rose’s Redemption.
Second, I serve a supernatural God, so I wanted to include a little something different. It’s not spec-fic, but I hope people will enjoy Rafe. Answer the question for yourself whether or not he is an angel.
Third, I included in Rose’s history a bombshell from her mother. That was personal to me, only I didn’t discover it until two years ago.
The point of Rose’s Redemption is that our faith or our change cannot just be external, as Rose tried to do by changing her name, her appearance, and her profession—but an internal change of heart, too.
God is in the business of change


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I have been anxiously awaiting the next book in this series and am excited to tell you how much I loved it. The author takes a character that is tarnished, lets us witness her transformation and along the way give us a lesson in forgiveness and acceptance. I can't say enough good things about Rose. She had a background that was shall we say not ladylike and is determined to change her life. It is very difficult for her to accept the friendship of Meghan and I loved how Meghan looked past Rose's sins and showed her friendship. There is a lot to learn from this story of redemption. I can think of a few times I thought I would never be forgiven for things I had done. 

There are a few graphic scenes where I wanted to cry as Rose was being beaten. I think in a way she felt like she deserved it  because she was tainted as a woman. Jake is a nasty character and has no respect for women. His character is well written and gives us a look at what rage, jealousy and pride can do to a person. I admire the author for not sugar coating the story but be able to do it in a clean respectful manner. 

Scott is a changed man from the first book and I loved his experiences he had with Rafe. They are very emotional and worth reading to find out what happens when Scott is faced with trying to forgive himself for his past.

There are eventful things happening in the book that deals with the railroad, an almost tragedy with Rose and faith that is felt throughout the book. I don't want to give the story away because it is one that needs to be experienced on your own. The author is gifted in showing characters that take a journey through forgiveness that was eye opening for me. Rose is the highlight of the story and she reminded me of the story in the bible about the woman that was accused of something. Jesus spoke up and said, "Ye without sin cast the first stone." It such a powerful statement and is very relevant to this story.

The author does leave a cliffhanger which entices me to anxiously anticipate the next book in the series.I highly recommend this series to everyone looking for a story strong in faith and shares how forgiveness is a choice and what happens when you open your heart to God.

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.



Blog Stops

Carla Loves To Read, September 5
CarpeDiem, September 6
For Him and My Family, September 9
Texas Book-aholic, September 13
janicesbookreviews, September 14
A Reader’s Brain, September 15
Inklings and notions , September 16
Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 17 (Author Interview)
Blossoms and Blessings, September 18 (Author Interview)

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Donna is giving away the grand prize of a signed copy of her book!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Waiting for God FB Banner

About the Book

Book: Waiting for God
Author: Xochitl Dixon
Genre: Non-Fiction, Devotional
Release Date: August 7, 2019
Waiting for God CoverInhale God’s Word. Exhale in prayer. Rest in God’s love.
If your heart is weary and longing for answers—for healing, for provision, for miracles—Waiting for God renews your hope with strong biblical truth and encouraging Scripture-based prayer.
Conquer your fears and frustrations as you inhale God’s Word, exhale in prayer, and rest in God’s love. Live a life of deeper connection and immediate communion with God that can lead to contentment in His constant presence, no matter what your days hold or how long God’s deliberate delays may last.
Xochitl Dixon writes each chapter with heart-touching transparency and vulnerability, as she shares her own story as well as the stories of others who are trusting God through waiting seasons with no apparent end in sight. As a woman who lives with chronic pain, Xochitl understands constant struggle yet chooses to put God on the throne of her life.


About the Author

xochi DixonXochitl (So-Cheel) E. Dixon has a heart for loving God and people. She’s passionate about intercessory prayer, nurturing spiritual growth, and the prayerful study and application of Scripture. Through her daily struggles with chronic pain, due to an upper back injury she endured in 1992, she writes with transparency, ministers to the hurting, and inspires hope through worshiping God in all circumstances.
She serves as a regular contributor to Our Daily Bread (www.odb.org), a ministry devoted to making “the life-changing wisdom of the Bible understandable and accessible to all.” Her devotional, Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace (Discovery House Publishers) is available for pre-order and releases August 7, 2019. She is a contributing author for the upcoming Our Daily Bread devotionals: What Really Matters (August 7, 2019), And He Walks with Me (October 2, 2019), and Moments of Peace for Moms (October 2, 2019).
Her devotions have also been included in All God’s Creatures (Guideposts, 2019), God Hears Her (Discovery House, 2017), Our Help (Discovery House, 2017), and This Far by Faith: Legacies of the Black Church (Discovery House, 2017). Her nonfiction has been published in My Amazing Mom (Chicken Soup for the Soul, 2018), Second-Chance Dogs (Revell, 2018), LIVE Magazine (2019), and Church Health Reader (2019).
She followed God from California to Wisconsin and is enjoying Midwest adventures with her best friend and husband of over 25 years, Dr. W. Alan Dixon, Sr. She loves their sons, A.J. and Xavier, spoils her service dog, Callie, and likes serving as a speaker, traveling, photography, reading, singing, sketching, studying Scripture, and nurturing authentic relationships.
Xochitl connects with readers and shares encouragement devotions, prayer, and Scripture-based memes on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and on her blog at www.xedixon.com. You can also follow her Author Page on Amazon’s Author Central.

More from Xochitl

“Never pray for patience.”
My friend’s warning pricked at the back of my mind. Without realizing it, I began lacing my prayers with fear, doubt, and caution. I couldn’t risk being thrust into situations that would force me to develop patience, so I did everything in my power to avoid asking the Lord to help me be patient.
But even when I didn’t ask Him to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit in me, I always seemed to end up in circumstances that stretched my faith as much as my patience.
When my agent challenged me to write the book I had to write, I pitched Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace.
I thought I’d be sharing tips about how to persevere through trials and endure suffering with grace. But after I signed the contract and received a deadline for my manuscript, my husband received an unexpected job offer.
We followed the Lord from California to Wisconsin.
Writing became a challenge as I suffered a setback in my healing journey. I endured high levels of pain and fatigue. My husband and I struggled with frustration as we adjusted to life in the Midwest during one of the coldest winters in history.
And God changed my perspective on waiting for Him, which has nothing to do with patience.
I’ll be sharing my answers to the end-of-chapter questions on my blog (www.xedixon.com). I’m excited to invite you to join the adventure.
I look forward to growing with you as we wait for God, inhaling His Word, exhaling in prayer, and resting in His love as we trust daily in His plan and pace.



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I don’t know about you, but I am the most impatient person around. I don’t like to wait in lines, wait for a food order to be delivered to my table or even sit in traffic. It is hard for me to understand why God isn’t answering my prayers sometimes and it frustrates me. When I received this book to review, I laughed  because I knew I needed this book to stop my pity party and listen to God.

As I began to read the book, it gave me a wake up call. How many of you have ever felt like God wasn’t working fast enough on your behalf? I can easily raise my hand and confess I am guilty of that. It is easy for us to point fingers at others and tell God they need to change ; that it wasn’t my fault we stopped talking to our friend or family member. After all, we don’t have a problem. I loved how the author shared how she  finally realized that God does hear our prayers and He is answering them in His timing not ours.

The author uses examples from the Bible to illustrate how God shows people like Hannah that He is waiting for her to surrender her whole heart to Him. It is so easy to become selfish and whine about our problems. Hannah in the Bible wanted a child but needed to give her love to God. He answered her prayer, but it was with change within Hannah that made it come to pass. The book also includes personal stories that were inspiring and showed how God worked in  their lives. The author includes prayer and questions at the end of each chapter which I enjoyed.

At the beginning of each chapter is a reading assignment, which I decided to do. The reading was encouraging and very relatable to the chapter. The author has done a great job of giving readers a book that guides you through challenges in your life while refreshing your mind and soul with God. I learned a valuable lesson while reading this book. I had become a full time caregiver in January for my brother who had Stage IV colon cancer. Day after day, I cared for him and made sure he knew that he was loved and important. Some days were hard as a I saw him start to slip away. I prayed for strength each day to be there for my brother. There were days I didn’t know if I could go on, but I was determined to make my brother comfortable in his last days. I wondered where God was and why wasn’t He healing my brother. Through this book I found peace and knew that God had been beside me each day as I cared for my brother. He gave me the courage to lead my brother to Jesus before he passed away. The book showed me that I had found a new relationship with Jesus as He gave me strength to care for my brother,

I encourage everyone to read this book. It is filled with scriptures, stories and wisdom that will renew your relationship with God and soften your heart to those who have caused you pain.

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light. Matthew 11:29-30

I received a copy of this book from Celebrate Lit. The review is my own opinion.

Blog Stops

April Hayman, Author, September 3
Genesis 5020, September 4
A Diva’s Heart, September 4
AndreaChristenson, September 6
Kelly Harrel, September 7
Mary Hake, September 7
Just the Write Escape, September 10
Texas Book-aholic, September 12
A Reader’s Brain, September 13
janicesbookreviews, September 13
Inklings and notions, September 14
Cultivating Us, September 15
God is Love, September 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Xochitl is giving away a grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card, a signed copy of Waiting for God, and a copy of God Hears Her (Our Daily Bread 365-Day Devotional)!!
Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.