Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Emma of Aurora

The complete Change and Cherish trilogy now released in one volume to enjoy (which is great, since now you won't have to wait to continue the story:)). This trilogy is the true story of Emma Wagner Giesy, an outspoken pioneer woman who is ahead of her time in the 1850's. When she jumps at the chance to move West, away from the community she finds so constrictive, she is surprised to find that she misses being in a community. As her story unfolds, she must figure out how to stay true to herself through the challenges that come her way.
The size of this book is a bit daunting, but it's nice to have all three books in one!

Like Moonlight at Low Tide

High school can be cruel, ask Melissa Keiser. When her family moves back to Anna Marie Island her Junior year, she wonders if anything has changed in the years since they moved away. When she left, she had become the object of the popular crowds jokes for liking Sam King,earning her the nickname "Messy".
Some things have changed, and Melissa soon finds herself in the cool crowd. Will hanging out with the right crowd help fill the hole left in her heart by her absent father? Or is there something bigger out there?
This book was interesting, in a good way. I like that it isn't just another young adult novel, but actually addressed some issues; like bullying. The characters were unique and the story kept you on edge. Two thumbs up!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Her Good Name

All Espy Estrada wanted was to have the chance to continue her education. And, get to know Warren Brentwood III better. But, with being born into a poor family, both seem to be just out of her reach. When she begins working for a Professor and his wife as a maid, things seem to change as she is allowed access to the professors library. As she starts being tutored by the professor, the rumors begin to fly, and Espy leaves town in disgrace. Can a missionary family help her learn how to trust again?
I feel kind of torn about this book. There were elements that I liked, the fact that there was more going on then the synopsis leads you to believe, but then I didn't care for some of the characters. I did like the out come though, and how Espy draws closer to God.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013


When young Levi returns to his homeland, only to find it decimated and his fiance taken, he must turn to the Safe Lands for refuge. But, when he gets there he finds out that the so called Safe Lands, a walled city, might not live up to its name.
Others are facing choices as well. Omar betrayed his brother in order to have him away when their place was destroyed, since he no longer wants to cling to the old ways. And Mason must race against the clock in order to find a cure for the virus destroying the Safe Lands.
This is an incredible new dystopian series by an author who may quickly become a favorite! I liked the Biblical parallels and truths hidden in the story. I can't wait to read the sequels!

If the Shoe Fits

In this modern day fairy tale, Julianne feels that she has found her prince charming when she sees a young construction worker almost cause an accident in order to save a dog. When  his tool box and work boot fall off, Julianne takes it as a sign to contact him and get to know him better. But, as she gets to know Paul, she discovers that her Prince Charming might be closer to home than she originally thought.
If the Shoe Fits is a cute modern day tale of letting God work your love story out to be better than any fairy tale. I thought this was a cute story!

Friday, November 15, 2013


It's 2250 and the world is a totally different place. There is only one source of water for the whole world,  an aquifer under the earths surface, mined by people more like rats and only accessed by the Deliver and his decendants, as they are the only ones trusted with the code to deliver the rats light rods and ensure another year of water.
Luca is set to be the next Deliver, a job he hopes not to take on for years to come. But, when his father mysteriously disappears, Luca must uncover the mysteries behind the world's history in order to figure out how to move forward.
I thought this story was fascinating and imaginative! Two thumbs up!

Thursday, November 14, 2013

Critical Reaction

When Kieran Mullaney decides to take on suing the Hanford Nuclear Facility for exposure to radiation at a facility that was supposedly shut down, he doesn't realize that he is fighting a losing battle. Living in a small town that is made up of generations of Hanford workers, he has little chance to succeed. When his lawyer backs out at the last minute, seeing it as a fight she can't win, Kieran contacts his college friend to help him out.
As Emily and her estranged father, Ryan, seek to race the clock and uncover proof for Kieran, they also work through some of their own difficulties.
I loved this book! While Todd Johnson's first book was amazing, I think that Critical Reaction is even better than The Deposit Slip! The suspense is fine tuned, the characters are more realistic, and the story wraps up nicely. Two thumbs up!

Monday, November 11, 2013

Strangers at my door

"And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me." Matthew25:40
When Jonathan and Leah Wilson-Hartgrove move to a new town, they decide to take on the challenge of opening their doors to any stranger who comes to them. This book is filled with the testimonies and heartache that came out of that ongoing experience. Even though there are risks involved, Jonathan and Leah were able to be part of something bigger than they imagined as they watched Jesus change lives through their opening their door and hearts to strangers.
This book will challenge you to look at your life and how you can take on opening your arms to the strangers around you. I highly recommend it!

Welcome to our world

I failed to mention earlier, but little baby Aster (her nickname for here) joined our family back in September! She came 17 days early, which wound up being a blessing, since I had a bit of hypertension towards the end of my pregnancy. Enough so, that I had to have some tests done to make sure I didn't have per-eclampsia (which came back negative, praise God!) and there was talk that I might have to be induced. So, I was more than thrilled when she decided to come on her own! I was able to have her at home, like we wanted, though not at our home, as we were at my parents house when the contractions started really going somewhere. With it being so early, I figured that we weren't going to have a baby anytime soon: I wasn't even convinced that I was actually in labor until the contractions grew close together and more intense.;) My in-laws give us a hard time for not calling them soon, it took their calling us to find out we were in labor! That would be because they called right after we figured that it was the real deal.;) We were a bit disorganized with things like calling family, since she just came so fast and before we thought she would.
Anyway, after over just eight hours of hard labor, Aster joined us! I thought I would want to sleep as soon as she was here, since I pushed for so long, but then she was here and I couldn't sleep! lol. I just wanted to take in our little bundle of joy. Almost two months later, I still am in awe that this little miracle is part of our family.

Captive Trail

The second book in The Texas Trail Series finds Jud Morgan full of hope at having found his younger sister who disappeared with the Comanche 12 years before. As Taabe Waipu seeks to learn English again to tell her story, settlers who have lost children to the Comanche come from all around Texas to see if she could be their missing child. As Taabe learns her native language again, snippets of her previous life, before captivity, start coming back to her.
I thought this book was well written, bringing to life a character who was taken from all that was familiar and now must re-learn English and a different way of life that the one she has lived the last decade.
I look forward to reading the rest of this series!

Friday, November 8, 2013

New voices in Christian fiction

Sometimes, it seems like(to me anyway) that a lot of fiction out there winds up being the same old predictable stories. Recently though, I have come across some new authors that are shaking things up, so I thought I would post about some of them here.

I adored this book! Totally unpredictable, this author is a must, especially if you are into legal fiction without to much of the legalese.  I'm looking forward to opening his second book, Critical Reaction.

If you like fantasy style novels, then you need to check this one out. I kind of doubted that I would like this one when I first started it, since the hero didn't seem like hero material. Once you get into the story and learn more about Errol Stone, reading how he grows up and changes, it makes you start cheering for him as he starts an unforgettable journey with an unlikely band. And the best news? It's the first book in a series.:)
Okay, I will admit it, I was drawn to this book from the moment I heard it was coming out, just because of the title. Mr. Knightley is, by far, my most favorite literary hero of all time. So, I knew I had to read this one as soon as I could get my hands on it.
At first, I was a bit miffed that the author made this a modern re-telling of Daddy Long Legs. But, then I got into the story, and found that she had made it so much more than a story of an orphaned girl writing letters to her generous benefactor. The emotion with which this story is written with is just profound. I loved it! No pressure, Katherine Reay, but I am looking forward to what you come up with next.:) 

Thursday, November 7, 2013

101 Conversation starters for Couples

This fun little book is full of different questions that will start discussions. The book is geared towards couples, but I thought that it would work for families and friends too. This book will help draw out your spouse/significant other and help you learn more about them. I think that this book would be especially fun to give to engaged couples, to help start some good conversations, though it is a nice resource if you have been married for a while. I thought this book was fun, while my (introvert) husband didn't care for it, but I guess that goes to show how different our personalities are.;) So, perhaps give it to two extroverts.:)

Stones for Bread

Bread making has been passed from mother to daughter for generations in Liesl's family, so she feels that it is only natural for her to have her own bakery. When one of her employee's gets Liesl a spot on  Bake-Off, a popular show on the food channel, Liesl's solitary world changes. As her baking family grows and she deals with fame, Liesl comes to the point where she must choose whether or not she wants to open her heart to love.
Part memoirs, part history, with Liesl's current story thrown into the mix, this book is a unique story. I like the recipes that are included and hope to try some of them! I had a hard time relating to the main character though, since she was very distant. I still found this book interesting though and would recommend it.
Reviewed for Booksneeze.

Monday, November 4, 2013

Snow on the Tulips

World War II has already taken so much from young Cornelia. So much, that she just wants to turn her back on the whole affair and wait for the Allies to come save the Netherlands from the Germans. But, when Gerrit Laninga's execution is botched near her home, she must decide if she is willing to put her life on the line for this young Resistance worker who has places God and country above personal safety and romance. As Cornelia and her family struggle to figure out what God would have them do, Cornelia finds herself falling for the dangerous man.
Based on real events in Liz Tolsma's own family, this novel is rich in history and detail. I loved the characters and their personal struggles, as I would imagine it is hard to be placed in a situation where you know the right thing to do would be to fight the evil, even when you want to bury your head in the sand.
I highly recommend this one!