A Friend in Me by Pamela Havey Lau – Book Review and Blog Tour

86c62e76-3190-43ac-87da-b7bff4c27eaa About the book:
 A Friend in Me (David C. Cook, June 2015)

Young women long for relational connection with women further ahead of them on the journey. Yet, without realizing it, many of us tend to distance ourselves from those in younger generations.

Can we really have close relationships with women who have different thoughts on church, different experiences with family, and different ways of talking about God? Where do we start?

In A Friend in Me, Pam Lau shows you how to be a safe place for the younger women in your life. She offers five patterns women need to internalize and practice for initiating relationships and talking about issues such as faith, forgiveness, sexuality, and vocation. Most significantly, she reminds you that there doesn’t need to be a divide between generations of women. Together, we can have a global impact—and experience a deeper faith than we’ve ever known.

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1RXNAmd

5411bc02-95f0-47c3-93bf-b72d303211f0

About the author:
Pam Lau is the author of Soul Strength and numerous articles for such publications as Christian Scholar’s Review and Christianity Today. She has taught writing at George Fox University and speaks around the country at conferences and retreats. A graduate of Liberty University and Colorado State University, Lau lives near Portland, Oregon, with her husband and three daughters.Find Pamela online: website, Twitter
The above is from the publisher.
My Thoiughts:
I have always had a heart for mentoring and getting more women of the older and younger generations connected with each other. This obsession started with some teaching by Donna Otto of Homemakers by Choice and her exegesis of Titus 2. To this day it is still a huge desire of my heart to see more Godly older women helping those of the younger generation, and really anyone can fit in those categories. There is always someone younger than you to mentor and older than you to have mentor you. Anyway, I was excited to see this book come up for review because of my passion for the topic. A Friend in Me is a book made to help us learn how to be a safe haven for other women. It teaches you how to become more accessible and for others to feel safe sharing the deep dark secrets that they need a more Godly women to help them walk through. This book had many moments that made me stop and pray about whether I was the type of women that I wanted to be. That being said it was a bit difficult to read at times. The writing felt disjointed in places and random. I think it could have used a couple more edits and good transitions to help it read easier. There were also several times when she would be trying to let you know of a real life example of what she was talking about but instead of feeling personal it just felt disjointed and left you wondering who in the world this person was. She would just mention someone’s name like you knew who they were, what they did, and why it was important. Like I said, this book does have lots of great jewels in it I just feel those jewels needed a bit more polish. However, I would still recommend it if you are wanting to learn how to be the type of women that a younger women could trust and confide in.

 

I received a free copy of this product from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. 

Fatal Trauma by Richard L. Mabry, M.D. – Book Review and Blog Tour

40f65f37-c613-4721-9187-a1d9093930b3

 

About the book:
Fatal Trauma (Abingdon Press, May 2015)

A gunman who has nothing to lose faces a doctor who could lose it all to prove his innocence.

When Dr. Mark Baker and Nurse Kelly Atkinson are held at the mercy of a dangerous gunman, the lives of every emergency room patient are at stake. At the end of the evening three men are dead. One of them is a police officer who couldn’t be saved despite Mark’s best efforts. The other two are members of the feared Zeta drug cartel.

Though the standoff is over, the killing is not, because when the drug cartel loses its members, revenge is not far behind. Facing an adversary whose desires are dark and efforts are ruthless, Mark finds himself under suspicion as a killer, yet still a potential victim. When he turns to his high school sweetheart, attorney Gwen Woodruff, for help, Kelly helplessly looks on, as she hides her own feelings for the good doctor.

At the height of the conflict, three questions remain: Who is the shooter? Who will the next victim be? And can Mark prove his innocence before the gun turns on him?

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1AIM9U5

16572c87-eb68-4664-87f2-0153e21af3b0
About the author:
A retired physician, Dr. Richard Mabry is the author of seven critically acclaimed novels of medical suspense. His previous works have been finalists for the Carol Award and Romantic Times Reader’s Choice Award, and have won the Selah Award. He is a past Vice-President of American Christian Fiction Writers and a member of the International Thriller Writers. He and his wife live in North Texas.

Find Richard online: website, Twitter, Facebook

The above is from the publisher.

My Thoughts:

I love me a good medical mystery drama, whether it is on tv or in a book. Dr. Richard Mabry’s book never fail to please. I love that because he is a retired physician I know the medical stuff in his books is not made up and I get a real look into hospital and medical life. This book had me engaged from the very get go. It starts right out with the action and intrigue and leaves you guessing the entire time. There were several times that I thought I had it all figured out only to find out I was so very wrong. Of course near the end some of my assumptions proved to be true but the big surprise at the very end I wasn’t even imagining which to me is the sign of a great suspense writer. The characters in this book were so very real and I found myself feeling their suspicion and fear. Richard Mabry has a knack for really drawing you into his stories and leaving you guessing right up until the last minute. I highly recommend his novels and can’t wait to read the next one.

Read thoughts from other blogger’s here.

I received a free copy of this product from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. 

Aoleon: The Martian Girl, Part 1 First Contact by Brent LaVasseur – Review

iRead Book Tour Logo Medium

Aoleon The Martian Girl PART 1

Book Trailer

 

Synopsis and Review

Gilbert is fascinated with space and the crop circles that continue to be formed in his neighbor’s fields. One night he is awoken by a vivid dream and then sees the circles being formed again. He goes to check it out and ends up meeting Aoleon, a martian girl. What continues is an exciting race through space as earth forces try to destroy the UFO complete with flying cows. When Gilbert reaches Mars however, he is in for quite the adventure. Is he the key to saving the Martian people from their evil leader?

I really enjoyed this story. It was fast paced and I can see how a middle grader would thoroughly enjoy it. It was smartly written and I loved how the author incorporated how to say the martian’s name as part of the story. It was very creative. The art is very interesting. It combines 3d art with realistic photos. Definitely something a middle grader would really enjoy. I definitely recommend this book for those middle graders who may be reluctant readers as there is lots of adventure and the pictures will draw them in.

Meet the Author

Brent LeVasseurMr. LeVasseur enjoys crafting good stories based on lovable characters designed to translate well to multiple media formats such as books, games, movies, and toys. He lives in New York when he is not commuting between Southern California and Olympus Mons, Mars. His hobbies include writing, 3D animation, musical composition, and intergalactic space travel. He also enjoys various sports such as skiing, running, and exospheric skydiving.

Connect with Brent:   Website  ~  Twitter  ~  Facebook  ~  Aoléon: The Martian Girl

I received a free copy of this product from the publisher in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. 

As Waters Gone By by Cynthia Ruchti – Book Review and Blog Tour

16ee6316-57a0-4495-bbdd-044ab4c464ec
About the book:
As Waters Gone By (Abingdon, May 2015)

How can a marriage survive when separated by hundreds of miles and impenetrable prison walls?

Emmalyn and Max Ross may have to endure the fight of their lives to mend the tattered fabric of their marriage. His actions ensured she could never be a mother and put him in prison, giving their relationship a court-mandated five-year time-out. On a self-imposed exile to beautiful but remote Madeline Island, one of the Apostle Islands of Lake Superior, Emmalyn has just a few months left to figure out if and how they can ever be a couple again.

Nudged along by the exuberant owner of the Wild Iris Inn and Café, a circle of misfit people in their small town, and a young girl who desperately needs someone to love her, Emmalyn restores an island cottage that could become a home and begins to restore her heart by learning what it means to love unconditionally. Yet even as hope begins to find a place within the cottage walls, Emmalyn still wonders if she’s ready for Max’s release. She may be able to rebuild a cottage, but can she rebuild a marriage?

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1Gs5M3Q

972840c6-0fc3-4e2d-9b39-8493402654d3

About the author:
Cynthia Ruchti has more than three decades of radio broadcast experience with Heartbeat of the Home radio and currently serves as Professional Relations Liaison for American Christian Fiction Writers.

Find Cynthia online: website, Twitter, Facebook

The above is from the publisher.

My Thoughts:

Where to start with this book? The premise intrigued me because I love stories of marriage and reconciliation and hope and that is exactly what this story is. I loved the thought of reading about a women who is broken and whose husband is in jail. What I didn’t expect is why he was in jail and the journey to wholeness that would happen for both of them. The theme of hope is so strongly written throughout this book and especially in the character of Boozy (Bougie).

Cynthia Ruchti has a way of writing that just brings you right into the story. She describes the setting and characters so well that you are instantly transported into their world. Even when I set the book down (which wasn’t often, I read it in a day) I still felt like I was in the middle of that world. She uses such colorful and beautifully descriptive language. I haven’t read something like this in a long time. It was like in Mary Poppins when they jump in the chalk paintings. I felt completely transported.

I also loved how three dimensional and real her characters were. She really brought them to life. It was as though she painted them and then they just jumped out of the page. They were all flawed in one way or another which is so real because we all are yet they all had something to give and teach others. It was a beautiful description of how relationships and life works.

There were so many twists to this story but they were all written so beautifully. She would give you little glimpses into the story behind the characters but in such a beautiful way, like she was peeling back an onion and showing you another layers. I never felt like I didn’t know enough about a character but then she’d reveal a bit more and it would be even more amazing.

I really could gush about this book all day long. The writing is amazing, the story line is fabulous, and the themes are life changing. I highly recommend this book to anyone and everyone. What are you waiting for…pick it up today!

Read other blogger’s thoughts here.

I received a free copy of this product from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. 

Cynthia Ruchti’s ‘As Waters Gone By’ Summer of Fun $100 Giveaway

Can a marriage survive when separated by hundreds of miles and impenetrable prison walls? Find out in Cynthia Ruchti’s new book, As Waters Gone By. Emmalyn and Max Ross may have to endure the fight of their lives to mend the tattered fabric of their marriage. His actions ensured she could never be a mother and put him in prison, giving their relationship a court-mandated five-year time-out.

Cynthia is celebrating the release of As Waters Gone By by giving away a summer of fun to one lucky reader!

as waters gone by - 400 

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A $100 cash card to put toward your trip to Madeline Island (discover the beauty of the setting of As Waters Gone By) or your summer vacation destination
  • A book-club set (10 copies of As Waters Gone By and a downloadable starter kit) so you can start your own summer book club

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on June 10th. The winner will be announced June 11th on Cynthia’s blog.

as waters go by-enterbanner 

Plus, now through mid-July, sign up for Cynthia’s mailing list for a five-day virtual tour around Madeline Island for the chance to win a Hemmed in Hope prize pack. Each day begins with an email from Cynthia that introduces where you’ll be “visiting” that day (all key places from As Waters Gone By) with various interactive elements, including“I wish you were here” postcards, trivia quizzes, and an ongoing Island scavenger hunt. The person who interacts the most will win a Hemmed in Hope prize pack (valued at more than $200). That includes:

  • The letterpress block Hope sign from DaySpring
  • A set of 6 Hemmed in Hope notecards showing a hope-themed Bible verse
  • A leather “I can’t unravel, I’m hemmed in hope” journal
  • Signed copies of each of Cynthia’s books, fiction and non-fiction

Thrilling New Read from Richard Mabry | ‘Fatal Trauma’ and the Perfect Prescription Giveaway

Can Mark find out who the shooter is before he becomes the next victim? You won’t want to miss the suspense in Richard Mabry’s new book, Fatal Trauma. Facing an adversary whose desires are dark and efforts are ruthless, Mark finds himself under suspicion as a killer, yet still a potential victim. When he turns to his high school sweetheart, attorney Gwen Woodruff, for help, Kelly helplessly looks on, as she hides her own feelings for the good doctor.

Richard is celebrating the release of Fatal Trauma by giving away The Perfect Prescription Prize Pack!

fatal trauma - 400

One grand prize winner will receive:

Enter today by clicking the icon below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on June 20th. The winner will be announced June 22nd on Richard’s blog.

fatal trauma-enterbanner

Hutterite Diaries by Linda Maendel – Book Review and Tour

5d2190d9-727a-4fbc-b097-f7afacca3311
About the book:
Hutterite Diaries: Wisdom from My Prairie Community (MennoMedia, May 2015)

What would it be like to share all your possessions and live in Christian community?

In Hutterite Diaries, Linda Maendel offers a rare glimpse into the daily routines and communal faith of her people, the Hutterian Brethren. From stories of working together to bring in the fall potato harvest to laugh-out-loud tales of sisterly love laced with revenge, Maendel invites readers into her Bruderhof, or colony, nestled on the prairie of western Canada. Here children and adults work, play, eat, and worship together, crafting a community of goods and living out an alternative to the individualism and consumerism of mainstream society.

Few outsiders know anything about the Hutterites, a Plain Christian group related to the Amish and Mennonites. Maendel’s story invites readers into deeper understanding of this community of faith, calling us to take seriously the example of Jesus and the early church in our daily living.

Purchase a copy: http://bit.ly/1ewVx3y

About the author:

Linda Maendel is a Hutterite author, blogger, and educator who lives in Elm River Colony outside of Winnipeg, Manitoba.

Find Linda online: website, Twitter

The above is from the publisher.

My Thoughts:

I have always been fascinated by the life of those who live “plain” such as the Amish, Mennonite, ect. This fascination began long ago when I first heard of the lifestyle and some of the amazing crafts and such they made and has continued as I learn more and more about their simpler life style. Don’t get me wrong I love my conveniences but the thought of making due with less clutter and reusing things more and making more things for ourselves fascinates me. This fascination continued with me being obsessed with Amish Christian fiction (which to me just seems such a wierd turn of phrase such Amish don’t believe in grace through faith alone but whatever) but soon found it falling flat and realizing that most Amish would hate such literature.

Anyway, all that rambling to say when I saw the news about this book being written about a similar sort of lifestyle but from the perspective of someone actually living it I was intrigued. I would really love to find more of the books in this series. I learned so much about the Hutterite, although not much about their theology which bugged me a bit as I’m interested in that but I realize the normal reader probably isn’t as much. Linda recounts much of her memories of life in the colony and many of the stories came from her blog. It is nicely structured and her writing style is very conversational as if you are talking to an old friend. I loved this inside look at a group living in Christian community, sharing all things, yet not keeping themselves from technology and such. If it weren’t for the speaking German all the time and most likely a theology that doesn’t quite align with mine I think it might be a pretty nice life. The only part of the book that was tough for me was when she went in to some of the history. It got a bit confusing and I think part of that had to do with her being so immersed in the lifestyle she didn’t realize how much of it would go over our heads. That’s easy to do though and I did feel like I caught enough of it to understand what she was talking about. Overall, I think this is a good book and helps you learn about a Christian culture from someone who is in that culture and we could all do with learning more about that.

Read what other bloggers thought here.

I received a free copy of this product from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. 

Top Ten Most Anticipated Releases For the Rest of 2015

toptentuesdayTop Ten Tuesday is a meme created by The Broke and the Bookish you can see this weeks topic post here.

This is such a fun topic this week. I did a list like this at the beginning of the year but so much changes by mid year so here goes nothing!

winter

1. Winter by Marissa Meyer – This is the fourth and final book in The Lunar Chronicles series. I have been waiting impatiently for this since I finished reading Cress last year. This is supposed to come out November 10th and I have already pre-ordered it. I can’t wait to re-read the series closer to the release date and just marathon the whole thing.

shadows

2. Queen of Shaadows by Sarah J. Maas – This is the fourth book in the Throne of Glass series and I would be very surprised if it is not on everyone’s list for this year. :) I’m looking forward to re-reading this series as well closer to the release date of September 1st. I’m also hoping by then I will have bought the whole series.

betrayl

3. The Heart of Betrayal by Mary E. Pearson – This is the second book in the Kiss of Deception series. If you have not read it you need to. It was so good and ended on the biggest cliffhanger ever. I NEED this book now, but it doesn’t come out until July 7th!!

friends

4. The Friends of Jesus by Karen Kingsbury – Karen Kingsbury is one of my must buy authors and I can’t wait for this book to come out on July 7th.

mistborn

5. Shadows of Self by Brandon Sanderson – This is the 5th Mistborn book and is slated to come out in October. I loved Mistborn and still need to read the Alloy of Law but am waiting for it to come up on the #yearofcosmere read a long. Brandon Sanderson has made a huge fan in me and I can’t wait to see how he continues the interesting magic system in this series.

wonderofyou

6. The Wonder of You by Susan May Warren – This is the 5th book in the Christiansen family series and comes out in July. I have loved this series so much. It’s one that you don’t have to read in order but will make more sense if you do. I have been lucky enough to get many of them as review copies.

magnolias

7. Among the Fair Magnolias by Tamera Alexander, Dorothy Love, Shelley Gray, and Elizabeth Musser – This is a collecction of love stories all told from southern women. I love the setting of the south especially for a good love story. Also, Tamera Alexander is an author that my friend Amy from Amy C Books on youtube loves and I really want to try out some of her writing. This comes out in July and as I was typing up this blog post  the announcement came out asking for reviewers!! So excited.

 

carry on

8. Carry On by Rainbow Rowell – This is the fantasy story that is featured in Fangirl or something to that effect. I haven’t read Fangirl yet but everything I’ve read from Rainbow Rowell I love so this should be good. It is scheduled to release in October.

highland

9. A Refuge at Highland Hall by Carrie Turanksy – This is the third book in the Edwardian Brides series. I really love Carrie’s writing. I feel like I’m watching an episode of Downton Abbey when I read her books. This is scheduled to come out October 20th.

trustlies

10. Where Trust Lies by Janette Oke and Laurel Oke Logan – This is the second book in the Return to the Canadian West series. This is a series that Janette Oke is writing with her daughter. I’ve been a huage fan of Janette since high school and I loved the first book in this series. This book already came out but I’m too lazy to find another book. LOL

 

Leave me a comment and let me know what books you are looking forward to the rest of the year and if any of these peak your interest. Happy reading!

Join the Odyssey Adventure Club for a ‘Buck’ (Plus a Summer Challenge)

oac-may 

Memorial Day is just around the corner, which means school will be out for the summer! Parents, does that fill you with dread, knowing all you’ll hear for the next few months is, “I’m bored!”? Keep reading because we have a deal for you—one that will only cost you a buck and that will keep your kids safe online while allowing them to have fun and to grow in their relationship with Jesus.

Buck Oliver is back in the latest Adventures in Odyssey album, and to celebrate, you can try the Odyssey Adventure Club for just a buck for your first month. Sign up before May 31st using the promo code BUCK! *This deal only applies to first-time accounts and is good the first month only.

Members receive:

—24/7 streaming access to more than 750 Adventures in Odyssey episodes (a $1500 retail value).

—A new, members-only Adventures in Odyssey episode every month.

—A subscription to Adventures in Odyssey Clubhouse Magazine.

—A web quest of video stories and online activities reflecting the biblical theme of that month’s episode.

—On-the-go access with the OAClub mobile iOS app.

—Growing access to Odyssey books, a daily devotion, access to select Radio Theatre dramas and more.

Additionally, a portion of each Odyssey Adventure Club membership benefits Focus on the Family partner organizations, such as Carry the Cure and Mission Aviation Fellowship, providing parents with an opportunity to teach children about the value of serving others. The Odyssey Adventure Club hopes to spend another 25 years hand-in-hand with parents seeking to teach biblical truth to their children while inspiring the theater of their imagination.

OAC-May-Offer 

Your favorite Adventures in Odyssey characters are also Taking the Plunge in Album 59 and now you can, too! This summer, dive into your faith and grow closer to God by joining the Adventures in Odyssey Clubhouse Magazine Taking The Plunge Summer Challenge. It includes these simple things:

  • Learn 5 memory verses
  • Get active with 5 family activities together
  • Share God’s love and your faith in 5 different ways

When you commit to the Adventures in Odyssey Clubhouse Magazine Taking The Plunge Summer Challenge, you’ll receive:

  • A promo code for an exclusive Odyssey Adventure Club first month offer (for new members only)
  • Adventures in Odyssey special studio message
  • “Strange Journey Back” book excerpt
  • “Jones and Parker Mysteries” book excerpt

To learn more about the Odyssey Adventure Club, visit www.oaclub.org, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

The Inn at Ocean’s Edge by Colleen Coble – Review and Tour

94054edb-5143-40c4-8be6-aac10464caa1About the Book:

Claire’s visit to a luxury hotel in Maine awakens repressed memories, threatening all she holds dear.

In 1989, Claire Dellamare disappeared from her own fourth birthday party at the Hotel Tourmaline on the island of Folly Shoals, Maine. She showed up a year later at the same hotel, with a note pinned to her dress but no explanation. Nobody knows where Claire spent that year—and until now, Claire didn’t even know she had ever been missing.

But when Claire returns to the Hotel Tourmaline for a business meeting with her CEO father, disturbing memories begin to surface . . . despite her parents’ best efforts to keep them forgotten.

Luke Rocco lost his mother under equally mysterious circumstances—at the same time Claire disappeared. After a chance encounter reveals the unlikely link between them, Claire and Luke set out together to uncover the truth about what happened that fateful year.

With flashbacks swimming just beneath her consciousness and a murderer threatening her safety, Claire’s very life depends on unscrambling her past . . . even if her family refuses to acknowledge it. Someone-maybe everyone-is hiding something from Claire Dellamare, and it will cost her everything to drag the truth out into the light.

 

CCoble-110About the author:

Colleen Coble has sold over 2 million novels worldwide. Seagrass Pier, the third installment in her acclaimed Hope Beach series, marks a new highpoint for emotion and complexity in Coble’s addictive brand of romantic suspense.

Find Colleen online: website, Facebook, Twitter

 

 

The above is from the publisher.

My Thoughts:

I love the whole idea of this book. There is so much mystery and intrigue. A whole year of Claire’s life is unaccounted for and Luke’s mom’s body has never been found nor have they figured out how she died. And many other little subplots got added in. I truly enjoyed this book. I loved the setting. I’m a huge fan of the coast and the beach so the setting was beautiful and I’m excited that Colleen is going to be writing more books set here. I also really liked the characters. I thought they were well fleshed out and I could really relate to them. Overall, this was a solid book. The only downfall was that I had it figured out about half way through. I know it’s hard to write a book that will surprise everyone, but I just wanted more from this. I gave this book 3 out of 5 stars. It was good but not amazing. However, if you love a good, clean mystery I would highly recommend it.

Read other bloggers thoughts.

I received a free copy of this product from Litfuse in exchange for my honest review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions I have expressed are my own or those of my family. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations.