Thursday, March 23, 2017

The Elusive Miss Ellison by Carolyn Miller (Book Review!)

The Elusive Miss Elison (Regency Brides A Legacy of Grace, Book 1)

by Susan K. Marlow

(received in exchange for an honest review)

The Elusive Miss Ellison

Genre- Fiction / Historical / Christian / Romance

Published by- Kregel Publications

Copyrighted- 2017

Number of pages- 304

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN 978-0-8254-4450-0

Miss Lavinia Ellison isn’t happy that the new Earl of Hawkesbury has arrived.  He reminds her of his brother who helped cause the death of her mother.  The villagers, primarily the mothers and daughters, are excited that he’s there.  He isn’t attached to anyone, so he is free to choose any of them.

The Earl of Hawkesbury, Nicholas, isn’t happy to be there.  He feels crushed by guilt, ancestral obligations, and the war he fought in.  He discovers that Lavinia is quite different, but they may never be able to be friends, due to their pasts.

Will they become friends?  Will he find love in the country?  Can Lavinia put the past to rest?

About the Author-

Carolyn Miller currently lives in Australia with her husband and children.  She is part of the Australasian Christian Writers and the American Christian Fiction Writers.  Some of her other novels have won RWA and ACFW contests.  Her website is www.carolynmiller.org.

My thoughts-

The Elusive Miss Elison was well written.  I never should have started reading it at night.  I couldn’t put it down.  It was a late night for me!

I don’t always like reading books about Regency England, but I loved reading this one.  Lavinia, Nicholas, Sophia, and all of the other characters were so well developed that I felt like I was there experiencing their lives.  I especially enjoyed the dialogue and bantering between Lavinia and Nicholas.  I thought it was nice that the class difference, Lavinia is the daughter of a minister, didn’t make a difference to either of them.  It did matter to many of the other people in the village.

There were many surprises in this book, but you’ll have to read it to find out more.  You won’t be able to put it down.

There is another book in the series, The Captivating Lady Charlotte, coming in the future.  I can’t wait.  I’m sure I’ll be writing a review, so stay tuned. 

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received The Elusive Miss Ellison, by Carolyn Miller, for free from Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour.  All links were current when posted.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, March 17, 2017

Under an Open Heaven by John E. Johnson (Book Review!)

Under an Open Heaven: A New Way of Live Revealed in John’s Gospel

by John E. Johnson

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Under an Open Heaven

Genre- Nonfiction / Religion / Christian Life

Published by- Kregel Publications

Copyrighted- 2017

Number of pages- 264

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $15.99, ISBN 978-0-8254-4408-1

Do you feel frustrated and needing more?  John E. Johnson has written this book to show us how the gospel of John relates to us today. 

Each chapter of the book is based different conversations in John and has thought provoking questions.  The end of the book has a conclusion, notes, bibliography, and section about John E. Johnson.

About the Author-

John E. Johnson is married, has two children, and currently lives in Washington and Oregon.  He has been a pastor and professor around the world.  He has a blog at www.drjohnejohnson.com.

My thoughts-

I thought this was a book that many people will enjoy and learn from.  Although the writing of this book seems disrespectful at times, it is easy to understand and it helped me delve into the book of John. 

I liked the questions at the end of each chapter.  When books have questions at the end of each chapter, I learn and remember more.  I do wish that the large group of verses mentioned at the beginning of each chapter had been in the book.  It’s easier to refer back to verses when they are in the book.

I liked the subject of each chapter.  They began “Life is About,” then continued with subjects such as:

  • Dismantling barriers
  • Being set free
  • Seeing the light
  • Living by God’s timing and purpose
  • Moving with the Spirit
  • Expanding one’s vision

I would recommend that you read this book, but remember to study your Bible and come to your own conclusions. 

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Under an Open Heaven: A New Way of Life Revealed in John’s Gospel, by John E. Johnson, for free from Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour.  All links were current when posted.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Courageous Love by Susan K. Marlow (Book Review!)

Courageous Love: An Andrea Carter Book (Circle C Milestones 4)

by Susan K. Marlow

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Courageous Love

Genre- Fiction / Historical / Christian / Young Adult

Published by- Kregel Publications

Copyrighted- 2017

Number of pages- 192

Age Group- Young Adult (12+)

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $9.99, ISBN 978-0-8254-4370-1

Life is going well for Andrea (Andi), but things will soon change.  She is having fun riding Shasta and spending time with wrangler Riley Prescott.  She’s with Riley when they find the fence cut near her brother’s calves.  Later on a brick wrapped in a warning is thrown through the window where they are having a party, cattle begin to die, and the horse barn catches fire.  Evidence points to criminals that Justin, her brother, had prosecuted.  Now they might want revenge.

What are Andrea and her family going to do?  Will Riley be able to save her from danger?

About the Author-

Susan K. Marlow currently lives in Washington.  She writes books, teaches writing workshops, and shares information about being a homeschooling parent.  Her website is CircleCMilestones.com.

My thoughts-

As I think over the four books in the series, I notice there is a theme of trouble for the Carter family, but also peace with God and knowing life will get better.

Courage was the theme of this book.  The verse from the Bible was taken from Joshua 1:9.  It talks about courage and remember that God is always with you.  Andrea certainly needed courage when bad things kept happening to her family.  She especially needed it when she was taken by the criminals.  It was her ability to keep calm and try to figure her way out of the problems that made her a strong character and always has.

I recommend this final Andrea Carter book.  I hope you take the time to share it with young adults.  There are so many books that have been written that don’t have good values, so this one is a breath of fresh air.

P.S.  Even though it is the fourth book in the series, it is not necessary to read the other three first.  You will want to read all of the books about Andrea after reading this one.

My review of Heartbreak Trail.

My review of Thick as Thieves.

My review of The Last Ride.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Courageous Love: An Andrea Carter Book, by Susan K. Marlow, for free from Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour.  All links were current when posted.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, March 3, 2017

Would you like to know? Collection by Tim Dowley and illustrated by Eira Reeves (Book Review!)

Would you like to know? Collection

By Tim Dowley

Illustrated by Eira Reeves

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Would you like to know  Collection

Genre- Christian / Juvenile /

Published by- Candle Books an imprint of Lion Hudson

Copyrighted- 2017

Number of pages- 168

Age Group- Young children (3-5)

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $12.99, ISBN 978-1-78128-327-1

This is a six book collection of picture books about different aspects of Christian life:

  • the Bible
  • Easter
  • Prayer
  • God
  • Christmas
  • Jesus

for young children.  Each book has an inscription section, fun illustrations, and a note for parents.  All the books can be stored in the sturdy cardboard containers that comes with the collection.

About the Author-

Tim Dowly writes and edits a new set of resources on biblical studies and church history.

About the Illustrator-

Eira Reeves currently lives on the Isle of Wight.  She has illustrated over 85 titles over the past 30 years.

My thoughts-

This was a cute and fun collection of books about Christianity.  I really liked all of the books.  The illustrations were eye catching and the text was perfect for young children. 

The book I thought could be better was about Jesus.  I didn’t think the part about God needed to be in there.  I thought that more could be included about Jesus’s life here on earth and his teachings. 

I liked that each book has some of the same characters.  I liked seeing the cat and the girl with the blue polka dot bow. 

This collection of books will help children become more interested in learning about Christianity.  I recommend it. 

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received the Would you like to Know Collection, by Tim Dowley and illustrated by Eira Reeves, for free from the Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour. All links were current when posted. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, February 24, 2017

Control Girl by Shannon Popkin (Book Review!)

Control Girl:

Lessons on Surrenduring Your Burden of Control

by Shannon Popkin

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Control Girl by Shannon Popkin

Genre- Religion / Christian Life / Women’s Issues

Published by- Kregel Publications

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 216

Age Group- Adult (women)

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN 978-0-8254-4429-6

Do you feel the need to control everyone and everything?  Shannon Popkin has written a book a book about seven different women from the Bible who felt the need to control everything around them.

  • Eve
  • Sarah
  • Hagar
  • Rebekah
  • Leah
  • Rachel
  • Miriam

Popkin uses her story, the stories of others, and specific verses from the Bible.  She also includes discussion questions and prayers.

About the Author-

Shannon Popkin has blogged on her website ShannonPopkin.com and also on TrueWomen.com.  She is currently married, has children, and is a speaker and teacher.

My thoughts-

There were a lot of wonderful parts to this book.  I liked the short lessons about each of the women and the discussion questions.  It gave me a lot to think about.  I could see myself in several of the women.  I know that I need to change and no longer be a control girl. 

One of the best parts of Control Girl was all of the Bible verses that needed to be looked up and read.  There were several times that I was so caught up in the women’s stories that I read much further than I needed to.  I was really getting into the word of God.

This was a great book.  I highly recommend it to all women.  After reading it you will begin to become the woman God wants you to be.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Control Girl, by Shannon Popkin, for free from Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour.  All links were current when posted.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Deep Water by Christine Poulson (Book Review!)

Deep Water: One Mistake and You’re Drowning

By Christine Poulson

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Deep Water Christine Poulson

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Thriller

Published by- Lion Fiction

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 252

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN 978-1-78264-214-5

An important lab book is missing.  The lawyer who was working on a case for Calliope Biotech is dead. 

Daniel Marchmont, patent lawyer, agrees to take the case.  Katie Flanagan works for the company and thinks that something unethical is happening.  Daniel and his wife are hoping that the results from the study will help cure their daughter from a genetic disord.

What will happen?  Will more people die?  Who is guilty?

About the Author-

Christine Poulson currently lives in in Derbyshire with her family.  She has a PhD after studying English Literature and Art History at the University of Leicester.  She has been a curator and a lecturer.  She has written fiction and non-fiction.

My thoughts-

The cover of the book can often sell or not sell the book.  Personally I didn’t like the cover of the book.  I thought the illustration of a needle and blood didn’t match with the title, Deep Water.  It made me not want to read the book.  I just ignored the cover of the book and just started reading.

I thought Deeper Water was very good about showing the way people truly are and can be.  Honor was all about having the results she wanted, not those that were right.  The person that I thought was guilty, Will, wasn’t.  He was a hero.

I liked how the Rachel and Katie were persistent  in pursuing the mystery.  They needed to learn about what happened to the lab book and who was harming the lab.  We need to always remember that even if people do wrong we need to forgive them.

Deep Water was an interesting book.  I would recommend it.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Deep Water, by Christine Poulson, for free from the Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour.  All links were current when posted.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Friday, February 3, 2017

Oswiu: King of Kings by Edoardo Albert (Book Review!)

Oswiu: King of Kings (Book 3 of The Northumbrian Thrones)

By Edoardo Albert

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Oswiu King of Kings

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Historical

Published by- Lion Fiction

Copyrighted- 2015

Number of pages- 560

Age Group- Adult (Men especially)

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $16.99, ISBN 978-1-78264-118-6

Penda King of Mercia has killed Oswald King of Bernicia.  He wants to kill Oswiu, Oswald’s brother.  He isn’t able to.  He strings parts of Oswald’s body up, and that spot becomes sacred.  Oswiu sets off on a mission to bring Oswald’s body back.  He succeeds, but Penda and Oswiu are even more bitter enemies than before.

Who will live?  What will happen with their children?

This book also contains a synopsis for books one and two, a list of characters, glossary, and a historical note.

About the Author-

Edoardo Albert has written for Time Out, History Today, and Minerva.  He is also a historian.

My thoughts-

One of my favorite time periods to read and learn about is the 1800 American West.  My other favorite time period to read and learn about is the time around when King Arthur could have lived. 

Oswiu: King of Kings, was interesting.  I enjoyed learning more about one of my favorite time periods.  I did think that this book was a bit long.  I personally found the first 200 pages to take a long time to read.  It was after Oswiu married Eanflaed that it became more interesting. 

I enjoyed the historical note at the end of the book.  It was fun learning about the history that this novel was based on.  I found the character list a great help.  I needed it to help keep everyone straight, because a lot of the names seemed the same.  The map and pronunciation guide were helpful as well.  I was grateful for the synopses of Edwin: High King of Britain and Oswald: Return of the King.  I appreciate it when authors put them in their book series. 

My favorite character in this book was Oswine.  He had the opportunity to change history by killing Eanflaed.  He didn’t he listen to his conscience and to Aidan.  Albert did a wonderful job of writing this book from a historical point-of-view.  I highly recommend it.

Here is my review of Edwin: High King of Britain.

Here is my review of Oswald: Return of the King.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Oswiu: King of Kings, by Edoardo Albert, for free from the Kregel Publications’ Blog Tour.  All links were current when posted.  I was not required to write a positive review.  The opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.