Before I Called You Mine

An invisible red thread connects those destined to meet, regardless of time, place, or circumstances. The thread may be stretch or tangle, but it will never break.

                                             Ancient Chinese Proverb

Before I Called You Mine is the first book that I have read by author, Nicole Deese and will be reading more of the author’s books. “God’s way is rarely easy, but it’s always better than mine.” How many times do we think our ways are better than His? How many times can we ignore what God wants for us? God knows our lives intimately, and he knew Lauren’s and her love for children that led her down the path of international adoption. However, the adoption agency’s requirement is that Lauren remain single for the foreseeable future, that is until she meets Joshua, a substitute teacher that is teaching across the hall from her.

How does Lauren choose between the desires of her heart even if it means saying yes to one, but letting the other one go? A story of faith, hope and following God’s plan. Carve out some time, make sure you have tissues and pull up a chair. A wonderful read for the times that we are going through now.

I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions are my own.

The Book of Lost Friends

Once again, Lisa Wingate has knocked this book out of the park. The Book of Lost Friends is a follow up to Before We Were Yours. The book brings to life stories from actual “Lost Friends” ad’s that appeared in Southern newspapers after the Civil War, as freed slaves desperately searched for loved ones who have been sold away.

I love how Lisa meshes two completely different people and families together and how they end the same. Heart breaking stories that change people. Real stories that help us see people from the inside out. The book deserves more than 5 stars.

Louisiana 1875; We are introduced to three women who are on a journey. Hannie, a freed slave; Lavinia, a spoiled heir; and Juneau Jane, Lavinia’s Creole half-sister. Hannie, torn from her mother wonders if her family is still out there.

Louisiana 1987; Bennie, a first-year teacher accepts a job in rural Louisiana, she is not ready for the level of poverty that her students live in. Bennie teachers her students that their family history is important to who they are and who they can become.

“If there is magic in this world, it is contained in water, but I have always known if there is magic in this world, it is contained in books.”

Order a copy of The Book of Lost Friends and get lost in the story. Lisa has the gift of researching and writing books that will leave an impression on the reader. I have been on several of the author’s book launches and she has become one of my favorite authors.
I received a copy of the book from the author in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions are my own.

One Step At A Time

The Joy of Falling is about learning how to live again after the death of a loved one, how to take one step at a time knowing everything will be ok. With heartache and grief come second chances and healing.

Two sisters-in-law, Angela and Eva both lose their husbands in a scuba diving accident a year and a half ago. Angela is barely making ends meet, angry that her husband left her to raise their three children on her own. Eva unable to move forward after losing the love of her life receives a phone call that changes everything. Before their husbands died they signed up for an ultra-marathon in New Zealand. Angela and Eva decide to take on the challenge with a friend of their husbands to honor the memories of them.

I recommend the book for those who are struggling with loss and wondering how to move forward. I was able to relate to the characters because I struggled with the loss of my grandma, some days are easy, some are hard.

I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

Outstanding Biblical Fiction

“Like Flames In The Night” is the fourth book in the Cities of Refuge series by Connilyn Cossette. I have had the wonderful opportunity to be a part of the launch team for all four books.
“The consequences of our foolish decisions are always made clearer when we look backward on the path we’ve traveled.” How often do we look back instead of forward? Like Flames in the Night follows Tirzah from book one to book four and Liyam who lost his daughter, he wants vengeance on the man who killed her. Issues like forgiveness, heartache and self-worth are woven through out the book. Connilyn has knocked this entire series out of the park and will be rereading the series.
I would highly recommend reading the series in order so that you don’t miss out learning about all the characters. Connilyn has been gifted with writing and did an outstanding job.
I received a copy of the book from Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest opinion. All opinions are my own.

Love and Courage

Star of Persia written by Jill Eileen Smith is a story of Esther, a Jewish girl living in a country that is full of pagans. A story of rags to riches, in her wildest dreams Esther never imagined becoming a queen of Persia. How does one stay true to God when faced with the impossible. Would Esther be able to hide her Judaism? Love, duty, fear and courage. In the court of Xerxes, which will prevail?

I remember celebrating Purim as a child and dressing up as Esther. A little girl’s dream to be a queen. The author did a fantastic job researching the history of the story of Esther and writing Star of Persia. If you enjoy reading historical fiction, I highly recommend reading the book.

I received a copy of the book from Revell Publisher in exchange for my honest opinion.

Chasing The White Lion

“Chasing the White Lion” by author James R. Hannibal is a story of twists, turns and mysteries. I did not realize that “The Gryphon Heist” was the first book that I should have read to understand and follow the story line and characters in the second book. This book is not my style of reading, if one likes James Bond or Tome Clancy than this one is for you.
I received a copy from Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest opinion.

A Great Start To A New Series

Ten years after her parents were killed, Evelyn is once more homeless. The orphanage that was her refuge and later her workplace has burned to the ground, and only she and a young orphan girl have escaped. Convinced this must be related to her parents’ murders, Evelyn flees with the girl to Mesquite Springs in the Texas Hill Country and finds shelter in the home of Wyatt Clark, a talented horse rancher whose plans don’t include a family of this own.

Can Wyatt keep Evelyn safe from the man who wants her dead? She will do anything to keep Polly safe. After the orphanage burned and killed everyone, the only thing Evelyn can do is run.

The characters are well developed. I love that when Evelyn was faced with challenges she kept moving ahead with Polly. A sweet romance and chilling mystery that kept me up late at night turning the pages as I followed Evelyn and Polly’s story as they made their home in Mesquite Springs.

If you’re looking for a quick read, pick up a copy of the book, grab a cup of coffee and dive in.

I received a copy of the book from Revell/Baker Publishing Group in exchange for an honest opinion. All opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

Quaint Town, Quirky Characters

The Road to Happenstance, a small town filled with quirky characters. Matthew Sadler rides his Harley in Happenstance whose goal is passing through, but people conspire to prevent him from leaving.
Matt is attracted to Roni a guest staying at the hotel reminds him of his late wife. The Barlow sisters think Matt is their knight in shining amour. Ms. Percy love’s the motorcycle, but she is wary of the woman from the hotel.
However, this quiet town has its faults and its sinister side starts to show. There are thefts and accusations that point towards Matthew. The longer he stays, the more he suspects a mystery.
With all that is going on in the world today, The Road to Happenstance longs to find a real place, a place of stepping back in time, a place that one might struggle with their faith and see God work through their lives. A quick read that will bring smiles.
I received a copy of the book from the publisher in exchange for an honest opinion.

Love, Faith, and Hope

The Runaway Bride, book two in the Bride Ships Series captured my heart from page one. The main character, Arabella was in the first book so I was familiar with her. I was pulled into the first novel, A Reluctant Bride as the brides traveled the world to British Columbia, Canada. I wanted prim and proper, but gentle Arabella to find love and joy since her past held some secrets. In The Runaway Bride. Jody is gifted at writing and does an outstanding job weaving faith and trusting God the main point.

Arabella’s past was terrible and continues to haunt her. She meets Peter who is from a different class, but they are attracted to each other. Carve out some time to read The Runaway Bride, I did not want the story to end and am looking forward to book three of the series.

I received a copy of the book from Bethany House Publishers in order to provide an honest review. The opinions are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255.

We All Should Encourage One Another

Yes Sisters written by Angelia White shares how we can say that yes and hope that we don’t have to do life alone. We’re better, stronger, and braver together.
I enjoyed reading the book but felt disconnected. I am one who never had a close group of Yes Sisters of close friends. Yes, I struggled and still do. The idea of Yes Sisters is completely foreign to me.
The author reminds us that God loves us and that we can accomplish what we set out to do. A Yes Sister is a woman who offers encouragement and believes in you. I envy those who have these relationships. We should surround ourselves with women who will affirm, encourage, challenge and remind us that we are worthy through thick and thin.
I received a copy of the book from Revell-Baker Publishing in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are my own.

Collision of Lies

Wow, a mystery thriller that pulled me in from page one. I had a hard time putting the book down and kept me up late turning the pages to find out what happened.

Three years ago, a collision between a fast-moving freight train and a school bus full of kids led to a devastation and grief on an unimaginable scale. Seventeen kids and three adults were killed, or were they? Detective Amara Alvarez was out enjoying her Saturday breakfast at a local diner when it was disrupted by a husband and wife arguing over a text that she received from their son. One thing leads to another that leaves Amara wondering if the children may still be alive. With time running out, Amara must convince herself and her co-workers that yes, the boy is alive and that she will do everything in her power to bring him and the other children home.

A clean mystery that was emotional, intense, mesmerizing, leaving you wondering what happened to the children. “Collision of Lies” was the first book that I read from the author Tom Threadgill and am looking forward to the next book in the Detective Amara Alvarez series.

I received a copy of the book from Revell Publishing in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Daughter of Rome

When you find an author that shares her talent and gift of writing you don’t want the story to end. “Daughter of Rome,” by Tessa Afshar is the story of Aquila, Priscilla, Paul, Rufus and God’s plan to transform the early church. Priscilla, the daughter of a Roman general meets a Jewish immigrant, Aquila. Their courtship is followed by murder and betrayal. They work to build a community of believers while a runaway boy and a foe complicate their lives.

There are many lessons in the book, one is that we should all be like Priscilla. She never gave up when they were forced from their home. The determination, forgiveness, mercy, love, willing to put aside those who wronged her, to take in those that are lost who do not have a relationship with Jesus. To literally be the hands and feet of Jesus.

Tessa has done it again!!! “Daughter of Rome,” will leave you looking for more. Jesus uses the struggles in our own lives to make something beautiful.

I received this book free from the author and her publisher in order to provide an honest review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Above the Fold

I did not realize that Above the Fold by Rachel Scott McDaniel was her first book. I am impressed! Elissa lost the love of her life to a journalism job in the city and feels she needs to prove herself to her father. The time period is the 1920’s and the Suffragette Movement is happening. She is working as a secretary at her dad’s newspaper trying to keep it afloat.
Cole, the heartbreaker moved to the city to work as a journalist, but never forgot Elissa. His plan was to return when he made a name for himself, terrible things happen, and he turns to the bottle. When her dad hires Cole, he challenges the both of them to write a front-page story. In the end they rekindled their relationship and eventually fall in love. I love the spiritual undertone; Cole’s character shows us that God is the God of second chances and how we see Him.
The 1920’s is a neat time period and the author did a wonderful job writing the book. If you enjoy reading historical romance than this book is for you.
I look forward to reading more books from the author. I received a copy of Above the Fold from Just Read Tours in exchange for honest opinion.

God’s Hostage: A True Story of Persecution, Imprisonment, and Perservance

What would you do for Jesus? How far would you go to share your faith? Persecution of Christians in on the rise throughout the world, churches are bombed or burned, believers are imprisoned or harassed even to the point that trying to share the gospel is illegal. I finished the book in one day and highly recommend God’s Hostage.
“God’s Hostage,” a true story of persecution, imprisonment, and perseverance is a true story of a pastor and his wife serving as missionaries in Turkey. In 1993 Andrew Brunson and his wife moved to Turkey, the largest unevangelized country in the world, through some difficulties and threats they were successful in planting new churches in a place where many people had never met a Christian.
They were arrested in 2016, Turkey released Norine, who stayed in the country, Andrew was imprisoned for 735 days. He was discouraged, at times felt that God abandoned him, broken, heart wrenching, but in the end a light in a very dark world. I found it quite upsetting that countries use innocent people for political purposes. At the end of the day, God is in control, He is always with us. He will bring us through the darkest of days.
I received a copy of the book from Baker Books in exchange for an honest opinion.

Don’t Lose Hope: Gospel Hope for the Discouraged Soul

How do we not lose heart in a world of natural disasters, war, famine, broken relationships and broken dreams? “Don’t Lose Heart” Gospel Hope for the Discouraged Soul is encouraging. The author separates the book into two sections, the first is How to fight for sight and includes what to do when you feel overwhelmed, defeated and worthless. Part is: How to defeat despair: What to do when the past paralyzes you, when the present disappoints you and what to do when the future scares you. The author backs up the chapters with pertinent bible verses.

Put yourself on the path of grace where you will hear the word of Christ, and link arms with others who will run the race with you. The picture of Hebrews 12 fits with the popular African proverb that says, “If you want to go fast, go alone, but if you want to go far, go together.” Let’s fight together, run together and finish together. We are not meant to do life on our own, we are to do life with our church and community.

I received a copy of the book from Baker Books in exchange for my honest opinion.