Friday, July 22, 2016

The Cantaloupe Thief by Deb Richardson-Moore (Book Review!)

The Cantaloupe Thief

A Branigan Powers Mystery, Book 1

By Deb Richardson-Moore

(received in exchange for an honest review)

 

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Mystery

Published by- Lion Fiction

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 299

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN: 978-1-78264-192-6

The Cantaloupe Thief

 Branigan Powers, local reporter, is investigating the ten year murder of a wealthy widow, Alberta Resnick.  This is the only murder than this town hasn’t been able to solve.

Branigan knows that there was a homeless person living in the pool house at the time.  She also knows that the homeless often have a lot of information to share, but are often overlooked.  She contacts a local shelter to see if they can help her find those who were living in the area ten years ago.  The more she asks questions and goes to where they live the more dangerous it becomes.  The killer must be back, the homeless who knew something are beginning to die.

Is Branigan safe?  Who is living in her barn?

About the Author-

Deb Richardson-Moore is currently a pastor in South Carolina.  She has been a journalist and worked with the homeless.  Her website is www.debrichardsonmoore.com.

My Thoughts-

This was a great book to begin the series.  I have been interested in homelessness and this book brought it back into focus for me.  There are many homeless and we need to help them as much as week can.  I could tell how much Richardson-Moore had worked with the homeless and cares about them. 

This book showed me how much drugs can take you from the great works you might accomplish in life to a life of being homeless or to a life of crime.  Branigan’s brother, Davison, and Rita, a former retail clerk, I thought were the best examples.

There are a lot of people who help the homeless in this book.  There are also those who are homeless who are try to help those who live around them.  It was interesting that there were people who had excepted that lifestyle and chose to stay that way.  I think it really helped them stay anonymous in life.

The murder mystery to me was a side note on the bigger social issues being discussed.  It was captivating though.  I did not guess the guilty person.  I didn’t even have any idea. 

I’m looking forward to the next book in the series to see what other social issues are talked about.  I recommend that you read this book if you like mysteries or if you want a different viewpoint of the homeless.

If you want to learn more about Richardson-Moore’s work with the homeless, read her book, The Weight of Mercy.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received The Cantaloupe Thief, by Deb Richardson-Moore, 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, July 15, 2016

Like a River from Its Course by Kelli Stuart (Book Review!)

LIke a River from Its Course

by Kelli Stuart

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Like A River From Its Course Kelli Stuart

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Historical

Published by- Kregel Publications

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 363

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN 978-0-8254-4414-2

The country of Ukraine and its role in World War II is not known to many.  Kelli Stuart spent fifteen years researching and interviewing survivors for this book.

In this book the reader meets Maria Ivanovna (fourteen and sent to a German labor camp), Luda Michaelevna (sixteen and raped and pregnant by German soldiers), Frederick Hermann (wanting to do the best for Nazism), and Ivan Kryilovich (mistaken for a Jew and sent to Babi Yar, the “killing ditch”).

What will happen to them and their loved ones during the war?  Will they survive?  What will happen to their city, Kiev?

About the Author-

Kelli Stuart currently lives in Florida.  Her blog is KelliStuart.com.  She has written for American Girl, Disney, and Short Fiction Break.  Stuart is also a coauthor of Dare 2B Wise and Life Creative.

My thoughts-

I have never studied much about World War II.  I know some of what happened in England, France, and Germany, so I was very interested when I learned about this book.  I knew nothing about Ukraine’s involvement and Babi Yar.  Since part of this novel is about Ivan Kryilovich, who was sent to Babi Yar by mistake, it must mean that there many Jews living in Kiev at the time.

As with many books of historical fiction, I make sure I read everything about the book, from the testemonials to the acknowledgements.  Since this book didn’t have a special section discussing the historical background of this book, it is important to read the acknowledgements, because Stuart discusses some of her research.  It would have been nice if she had included more about her research and the people that the characters were based on.

This was a book I had hard time putting down.  I wanted to always learn more about their circumstances and what happened to them. 

If you want to learn more about World War II in the Ukraine, I would suggest that you read this one.  It is good for both men and women.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Like a River from Its Course, by Kelli Stuart, 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, July 8, 2016

Lethal Harvest by William Cutrer and Sandra Glahn (Book Review!)

Lethal Harvest

by William Cutrer  and Sandra Glahn

(received in exchange for an honest review)

Lethal Harvest

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Suspense

Published by- Kregel Publications

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 352

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $15.99, ISBN 978-0-8254-4409-8

Lucas Morgan.  Marnie Sullivan.  Ben McKay.  Just some of the people affected by Tim Sullivan’s experimenting with human embryos.  Tim is killed in a terrible accident following his experiments, which he hopes will save the president’s life. 

Tim and a group of federal agents are the only ones who know about this experiment, but because of his death, Marnie, his widow, and Ben (Tim’s business partner) must now figure out what happened. 

Are their lives safe?  Have others’s been affected by the human embryos?

About the Authors-

William Cutrer passed away in 2013, but was an ordained minister and a recognized expert in reproductive technology and medical ethics.

Sandra Glahn is a professor at Dallas Theological Seminary in media arts and worship.

My thoughts-

This book was certainly suspenseful.  I didn’t know what was going to happen.

Tim was a very interesting man.  I didn’t like that he hid his work, but I understand why he did it.  If his uncle, as the president of the United States, wasn’t able to do his job because of his health, the nation would be at risk.  Tim did it for all of the citizens.  I think he should have picked somewhere other than the clinic to store the embryos, but it is what it is.  The book wouldn’t have been the same otherwise. 

I liked Marnie and Ben.  They are being tested and need to figure out what is going on.  Ben falls back on his chaplain training to support Marnie after Tim’s death. 

This is an interesting book that I think both men and women will like.  I recommend it to those who like supense and intrigue.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received Lethal Harvest, by William Cutrer and Sandra Glahn, 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.

Thursday, June 2, 2016

The Beautiful Thread by Penelope Wilcock (Book Review!)

The Beautiful Thread

The Hawk and Dove Series, Book 8

By Penelope Wilcock

(received in exchange for an honest review)

 

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Historical

Published by- Lion Hudson

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 208

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN: 978-1-78264-145-2

The Beautiful Thread

William de Bulmer has come back to the abbey to help Abbot John and the new cellarer with a society wedding.  Unfortunately, Bishop Eric will also be there.  Since William is a former abbot and monk, who also attempted suicide, Bishop Eric could bring him to justice for breaking his monastic vows.  Bishop Eric wants to find him. 

Conradus's mother brings a problem of her own when she comes to the St. Alcuins to help with the wedding.  Will she be a help or a hindrance? 

About the Author-

Penelope Wilcock currently lives in England with her family.  She is a writer and is a former Methodist minister.  Her blog is Kindred of the Quiet Way.

My Thoughts-

I have enjoyed this book and the others in the series.  Penelope Wilcock is a wonderful writer.  I have been drawn into each of the books, so I've come to remember the characters and enjoy watching them grow in God.

I typically don't like to turn the corners of the pages or mark in books (I like to keep them nice), but I just had to do it in this book.  There were different life lessons and ways to grow in God.  My favorite one was on page 83 when Conradus's mother was speaking to Father John.  She had a game as a young child where she would try to make people happy.  She still did it as an adult.  I have noticed that I was doing the same thing at work.  I have been trying to brighten people's lives.  I really appreciated this lesson and I want to make sure that I do it every day. 

I would recommend this book to others.  There are life lessons and good information about 14th century abbeys.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received The Beautiful Thread, by Penelope Wilcock, 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.

The Breath of Peace by Penelope Wilcock (Book Review)

The Breath of Peace

The Hawk and Dove Series, Book 7

By Penelope Wilcock

(received in exchange for an honest review)

 

Genre- Fiction / Christian / Historical

Published by- Lion Hudson

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 204

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN: 978-1-78264-173-5

Breath of Peace

Abbot John needs his new brother-in-law, William de Bulmer, to come back to the abbey to help with cellarer duties. 
William is a former monk and abbot.  He loves his new wife, but each conversation has now become a fight.  He is very capable with finances, administration, and used to authority figures.  He is having more problems being a husband.

Will William be able to adjust to his married life?  Will he be able to help Abbot John with the duties at St. Alcuin's Abbey?

About the Author-

Penelope Wilcock currently lives in England with her family.  She is a writer and is a former Methodist minister.  Her blog is Kindred of the Quiet Way.

My Thoughts-

I have enjoyed this book and the others in the series.  Penelope Wilcock is a wonderful writer.  I have been drawn into each of the books, so I've come to remember the characters and enjoy watching them grow in God.

In this book there are several things I especially appreciated:

  • don't judge others.
  • learn their story (what makes them tick), so you know why they act the way they do.
  • be patient and kind.
  • don't assume you know eveyrthing about them.
  • take time for them.

I appreciated these lessons, because I have recently been in the situation where I need to do all of these things to make my life and theirs more pleasant. 

I would recommend this book to others.  There are life lessons and good information about 14th century abbeys.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received The Breath of Peace, by Penelope Wilcock, 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.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

My Toddler Bible by Juliet David and illustrated by Chris Embleton-Hall

My Toddler Bible

By Juliet David

Illustrated by Chris Embleton-Hall

(received in exchange for an honest review)

My Toddler Bible

Genre- Christian / Juvenile / Bible

Published by- Candle Books

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 224

Age Group- Young children (young readers)

Description of book- hardback, listed price- $12.99, ISBN 978-1-78128-241-0

This book contains twenty Biblical stories.  Nine are from the Old Testament, and eleven are from the New Testament.  Young children will learn about Noah, Moses, Jonah, Jesus, and more!

The language is easy enough for toddlers to understand and simple enough for young readers.  The illustrations are bright, realistic, and come off the page.

About the Author-

Juliet David lives in London with her family. She has written Bible activity books and children’s stories. She enjoys traveling to Israel and other Bible lands.

About the Illustrator-

Chris Embleton-Hall is an English-based artist.  He uses different digital styles for children’s illustrations.  He has a degree in illustration.  When he was a young child, he spent time with his granddad drawing.

My thoughts-

This book would be perfect for any toddler, since there are so many stories and illustrations to look at.  I thought it was great.  I have some young nephews who I think would really enjoy looking at the illustrations and reading the text.

Many times Bible storybooks that are written for young children are short and don’t contain very many stories.  I thought it was great that this book had 224 pages and twenty different stories.  I think it would have been nice to have some different stories, not ones that are told all the time. 

I really liked the illustrations.  They seemed to pop off of the page.  I thought it was neat how they were done digitally.  They were realistic and not strange as they sometimes are.

I really enjoyed reading the text and looking at the illustrations in this book.  I think the young children in your life would like it too.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received My Toddler Bible, by Juliet David and illustrated by Chris Embleton-Hall, 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.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

The End of Law by Therese Down (Book Review!)

The End Law

(A Novel of Hitler’s Germany)

By Therese Down

(received in exchange for an honest review)

 

Genre- Fiction

Published by- Lion Hudson

Copyrighted- 2016

Number of pages- 320

Age Group- Adult

Description of book- paperback, listed price- $14.99, ISBN 978-1-78264-190-2

The End of Law

This book is a novel about the beginning of World War II and Hitler’s rise to power.  SS Officer Walter Gunther and SS Officer Karl Muller are involved in the T4 euthanasia programme.  This program has been developed to kill those who are considered “unworthy.”  Those people are Jews, crippled children, the mentally ill, and homosexuals.

Their families don’t know what they are doing.  Officer Muller decides to be brave and share what he knows about the program.  Who will he share his burden with?  Will it be Officer Gunther’s wife?  

About the Author-

Therese Down is a teacher of the English language and literature.  She lives in Worcestershire.  Her other novel is Only With Blood: A Novel of Ireland.

My thoughts-

I thought this book was interesting.  I had never read much about this aspect of World War II.  I’m not even sure if I knoew about the T4 euthenasia program.  I knew that the Jews were killed, but I’m not sure I knew about the other groups.

Sometimes it was a hard book to read, because of all the detail about what the Third Reich was doing to the crippled children and mentally ill.  Therese Down painted such a strong vision for me.

One of the best parts of the book was the historical section at the end, because I was able to learn true story.  I do wish that this section had been at the beginning of the book, so I would have known more about what the novel was about.

If you like reading about World War II, this book is for you.  I do recommend it to everyone.  I think you will like it.

Disclosure of Material Connection- I received The End of Law, by Therese Down+, 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.