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Sunday, June 22, 2014

Blind Trust by Sandra Orchard

Hello again! I am writing yet another book review. I actually have three more exciting novels to read and review by the end of July. Can't wait!

I just finished a few days ago a novel called "Blind Trust"
by Sandra Orchard. Blind Trust is the second novel in the Port Asher Secrets series. It is a Christian mystery novel and was an excellent read. It tells the story of Kate Adams, a woman who recently lost her friend to murder and was involved in the murder trial. This takes place after an finds Kate involuntary and accidentally involved in a counterfeit money investigation after doing some grocery shopping for her elderly neighbor, who gave her counterfeit bills. Tom Parker, a detective whom Kate has known for some time, is the head of this investigation and Kate and Tom find themselves in the middle of a dangerous situation full of fear, uncertainty, and romance. During these tough times Kate has to learn how to trust God, as well as Tom, with her safety and well being.



I actually have not read many mystery/crime novels. I tend to learn more towards fantasy, science fiction and historical fiction. This novel however was very good and I might even read more from its genre due to enjoying this one so much. It has just the right amount of suspense and mystery and romance thrown in. It was enjoyable from the beginning to the end. However, I wish I had read the first installment of the series because a lot of Kate and Tom's back story and information would have been helpful while reading the second one. I also liked how there were Christian aspects and revelations written throughout. I definitely recommend this book to readers who love a great mystery laced with romance and God.

Note: I received this book for free from Revell in exchange for my honest review. 

Sunday, June 15, 2014

" A Place in His Heart" by Rebecca DeMarino

        “A Place in His Heart” by Rebecca DeMarino was an very good heart warming historical romance novel that is actually based on the author's ancestors. The book tells the story of Anglican Mary Langton, who after being left at the altar, longs to marry for love. Barnabas Horton, a Puritan who recently lost and is grieving for his precious wife, is on the search for a mother to care for his young sons. Although Barnabas is still in love with his first wife, Mary agrees to marry him in the hopes of caring for him and his sons, as well as eventually winning a place in his heart. The novel tells of their trials as husband and wife, as well as the struggles that comes with taking the heart wrenching move to the New World.



        For me, this book was highly entertaining and really well written. I thoroughly enjoyed it from beginning to end. However, I was slightly disappointed that it took so long for Mary and Barnabas to truly fall in love and realize what was in front of their faces the whole time. I kept waiting and waiting for Barnabas to realize that he needed to start treating his current wife better. In fact, I kept finding myself mad at him for treating her like he did. However, I think that almost made it an even better book to read, due to the anticipation that built up throughout. I loved how with each trial and tribulation Mary faced she grew and her faith increased considerably. For me, the end of the book was very fulfilling especially after waiting page after page for Barnabas and Mary to truly fall in love. I highly recommend this book, especially for those who love historical fiction like me. Great first novel; I cannot wait to read the next installment in the series.
Note: I received this book for free from Revell in exchange for my honest review. 


Saturday, June 7, 2014

Dark Eden by Christ Beckett



        Dark Eden by Chris Beckett tells the story of an alien, sunless planet called Eden and the 532 members of the Family who live within the Forest. The only source of light comes from plants and animals that have have evolved to emit heat and light, and beyond the Forest is the Snowy Dark, which no one has ever crossed in fear of its cold and bitter nights. The Family is content to stay within the safety and warmth of the Forest until one young man, John Redlantern changes everything. He and his friends abandon everything they have ever know to venture into the Dark. Dark Eden tells of their journey and how they discover the truth about their past and about their world.

       Dark Eden is a strange and compelling novel and it has a lot of neat and unique concepts. One of the reasons I chose to review this book is because many of the reviews I read mentioned the book having unique language and being amazingly imaginative. Both of these facts are true. This novel really is beautifully written with rich language. In fact, there is a lot of vocabulary the reader has to learn along with the customs of this new world. It was actually quite fun to immerse myself in and learn about this new world. However, it was a little strange to me and I found it hard to get past that fact that so much emphasis was put into “slipping” which is the Eden term for sex. The characters in the book have sex whenever they want: young with young, young with old, etc. It was quite disturbing. When I requested to review this novel, I though I was getting a young adult novel, but I would never let a young adult read this book due to all the disturbing sex scenes apparent throughout. However, I would still have to say this book was extremely intriguing, original and imaginative and I would probably read the sequel if published.


Note: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Press in exchange for my honest review.  

Life Behind the Wall by Robert Elmer

     

        Life behind the Wall is a juvenile historical fiction novel that contains three different stories: “Candy Bombers”, “Beetle Bunker” and “Smuggler's Treasures.” Each one tells of three different generations of the same family and their experiences living in Germany before as well as after the Berlin wall was built. The first story is centered around a young boy named Erich in the days after World War II, and tells of the devastation and struggles apparent during that time in East as well as West Berlin. The second story, “Beetle Bunker” focuses on Erich’s half sister Sabine who finds an abandoned bunker that could be a potential way under the wall, while the third story, “Smuggler's Treasures” tells the story of Sabine's daughter's Lisel and her quest to find more out about the history of the Berlin Wall and her family history.

       Overall, I found this novel to be very enjoyable. While the book is geared towards a younger audience, I found that all ages can enjoy it. It is a very entertaining and easy read. It is also an excellent way to introduce younger readers to the historical era of World War II and the struggles that occurred before and after the Berlin Wall was constructed. I loved how this book evoked many emotions while reading it: laughter, tears, hope, sadness. I would definitely recommend this book to my friends and family, as well to a younger reader. It will help open their eyes to the past while giving them a entertaining and educational read.


       Note: I received this book for free from Booklook Bloggers in exchange for my honest review.  

"Finding Spiritual Whitespace: Awakening Your Soul to Rest"

This post is part of the “Finding Spiritual Whitespace Blog Tour” which I am a part of, along with a group of soulful, journeying kindreds. To learn more and join us, CLICK HERE!
About the book:
Move beyond surviving to a rejuvenating place of soul rest.
How many of us find ourselves running on empty with no time for rest, no time for ourselves, no time for God? Bonnie Gray knows what that's like. On the brink of fulfilling a lifelong dream, she saw her plans shatter into a journey through painful memories a
nd anxiety. In her search for answers, she made an important discovery: we all need spiritual whitespace.
          I found the novel, “Finding Spiritual Whitespace” to be an excellently written novel. The novel is written by Bonnie Gray, who is the writer behind Faith Barista.com. She wrote this book about her inspiring, heartbreaking journey to find rest, which garnered Publisher’s Weekly starred review. I am taking the journey to find rest through this guidebook and I invite you too read it too. You can get a copy HERE.


          “Finding Spiritual Whitespace” was one of those books where you sit down to read it and it completely consumes your attention. I enjoyed every minute that was spent reading it, and while I did not dive as deep as I wanted to into the book this first time around, I plan to go back , read it again and use it as a way to truly find what my spiritual whitespace looks like. It is an excellent way to further your relationship with Christ as well and if used properly will help you start your journey towards finding rest in Jesus. Within the book, Bonnie Gray tells of her her own painful journey with PTSD that actually arose from writing the novel. She also reveals how to awaken our own souls to spiritual rest and also how to become closer to Christ. In her words: “Spiritual Whitespace makes room- room in our hearts for a deeper, more intimate relationship with God, room in our lives for rest, room in our souls for rejuvenation.

          The book is written in a way that encourages the reader to pause and ponder. Each chapter ends with various prompts and tools for prayer, discussion, etc; I loved this and when I go back and read it again these will definitely help me to dive deeper and soak up the material and wisdom being presented. I also highly recommend this book to all who want to heal and find peace. 
          Favorite quote/ passage: “God is the Artist and Architect of the soul. He doesn't use up every single possible space on the canvas. When God looked at what he was holding- after placing his lips and breathing into the dust- he saw something come alive. Something he never, ever made before. It's what God sees, looking into your heart and mine today. He is making something beautiful out of you.”

Note: I was given this book for free in exchange for my honest review from Revell.