Monday, December 15, 2014

Answers to your questions about Heaven by Dr. David Jeremiah (Review)

  • Hardcover: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale House Publishers, Inc. (February 1, 2015)
  • ISBN-13: 978-1496402127

Is heaven a literal place?

What does it look like?

What will we do all day?

Will there be angels there?

We all have questions about what heaven will be like. Fortunately, Scripture is filled with helpful information about our future home—we just have to know where to look.

Dr. David Jeremiah has spent a lifetime studying what the Bible has to say about heaven, and now in Answers to Your Questions about Heaven, he has done just that—provided answers to your most pressing questions about heaven, angels, and eternity in a straightforward, easy-to-understand, Biblical based book. A perfect gift for friends and family and a handy resource to keep on your own shelf, this handsome little book will ignite your imagination and whet your appetite for all the amazing experiences that await!

My Review:

 This was a short question and answer book about Heaven. Dr. David Jeremiah is a well known pastor and writer. I trust his interpretations based off scripture. The book was easy to understand and laid out well. Age group wise I think middle school and up would be able to understand this book. Recommended to those looking for an uncomplicated simple book with answers to questions about Heaven.  

Review copy provided by Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good by Kathleen Flinn (Review)

  • Hardcover: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Adult (August 14, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670015443

A family history with recipes, Burnt Toast Makes You Sing Good offers a flavorful tale spanning three generations as Flinn returns to the mix of food and memoir readers loved in her New York Times best-seller The Sharper Your Knife, the Less You Cry. From a Route 66 trek to San Francisco to their Michigan farm to the shores of Florida, humor and adventure defines her family even in the worst of times. (Think Jeannette Walls' The Glass Castle meets the works of Ruth Reichl topped with a dollop of Julia Child.) You'll savor Uncle Clarence's divine corn flake-crusted fried chicken, Grandpa Charles' spicy San Antonio chili and her grandmother's birthday-only cinnamon rolls. Through these flavors, Flinn came to understand how meals can be memories and cooking can be communication. Brimming with warmth and wit, fans of Luisa Weiss' My Berlin Kitchen, Gabrielle Hamilton's Blood, Bones and Butter and especially Betty Smith's A Tree Grows in Brooklyn will delight in this revealing look at a family that just might resemble your own.

 My Review:

I enjoyed reading this latest memoir from author Kathleen Flinn. She incorporated stories from her family's past with the food they ate. The recipes are included in the book for anyone that wants to try them. There were many funny moments along with some more serious ones. Things were not always easy for them but they always had their family. Recommended. :) 

Kathleen Flinn has been featured in media outlets worldwide, including People, Elle, Bon Appetit, The Wall Street Journal, The Christian Science Monitor, National Public Radio and CBS Morning News. Her acclaimed second book, The Kitchen Counter Cooking School, was named a 2012 Book of the Year by the American Society of Journalists & Authors. She divides her time between Seattle and Anna Maria Island, Florida, with her husband, Mike Klozar, and their trusty rescue dog, Maddy.

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Hearing His Voice Devotional by Chris Tiegreen (Review)

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Tyndale Momentum (September 1, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-1414366852

This year, learn to listen for the voice of the One who loves you most. We know for sure that God speaks to His people. Throughout the pages of Scripture, time after time, He guides, instructs, corrects, inspires, encourages, and reveals. Inspired writers even call Him “the Word.” He has always been vocal, and He always will be.

But what does He say to you? How does He say it? How can you know when you’ve heard Him? In The One Year Hearing His Voice Devotional, Chris Tiegreen will help you discover patterns and practices you can adopt to hear God better. Listening to God is a process, a journey, and an adventure. He promises that those who seek Him will be rewarded with His presence and His voice. And the words of the living God are powerful and life-changing.

My Review:

The premise for this devotional was interesting to me. I just did not connect with the book .Each devotional consisted of a bible verse, words from the author, and a prayer. The passages from the author were confusing and did not shed any light for me on how to listen for God. I passed this book along so hopefully someone else might be enlightened.   

 Chris Tiegreen is an award-winning writer and editor at Walk Thru the Bible in Atlanta, Georgia. He has also been a missionary, pastor, journalist, photographer, and university instructor. He has helped plant churches in several states and countries and still enjoys travel and mission work. Most of his books are either devotionals or inspirational commentaries on Christian themes, and he especially enjoys challenging readers to break out of their traditional assumptions and really get to know God. He and his family live in the Atlanta area.

Review copy provided by Tyndale Blogger in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, November 28, 2014

Pound Foolish by Dave and Neta Jackson (Review)

  • Paperback: 332 pages
  • Publisher: Castle Rock Creative, Inc. (September 25, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0982054499

Greg Singer coordinates consumer sports shows for powerboats, four wheelers, snowmobiles, and jet skis-macho toys for outdoor men like himself. But the job puts tremendous stress on his marriage with Nicole, who for the first time notices the handsome lawyer at the end of the block. "Greener pastures?" When the recession hits Greg's industry, he thinks the crisis is merely an opportunity for God to bless him with unmatched prosperity, a promise he hears preached each Sunday, and he steps out in bold faith . . . But is he being "pound foolish"? The fourth in the Windy City Neighbors series, POUND FOOLISH explores the economic upheaval and uncertainties challenging every family. Intersecting with PENNY WISE (book three), the Jacksons employ the innovating storytelling technique of "parallel novels." Though each book follows its own drama and story arc, the characters' lives become intertwined and affect one another. Pound Foolish returns us to Beecham Street-a typical American neighborhood . . . where a growing friendship brings new meaning to prosperity.

My Review:

This is the fourth book in the Windy City Neighbors series. I have enjoyed reading the series this far. That said this was not my favorite book. I have not liked Greg Singer from the beginning. That may have been on purpose by the authors, I'm not sure. I still like the way the story is written using the technique of "parallel novels" and the characters staying the same throughout. Characters from previous books make an appearance in each book after. I enjoy learning more of their stories in the background. The main plot line in this book is the relationship between Greg and Nicole Singer. Greg is all about money and it starts to consume him. When he loses his job instead of finding another regular one he explores the crazy ones that pop up on the computer like selling a new energy drink. I found interesting the sermons being preached at their church and the way Greg was able to twist them to fit his money ideas. Nicole was the only one that realized the preaching was not sound. Greg and Nicole have communication issues anyway. Greg learned the hard way that get rich quick schemes do not work. He almost lost everything. Many couples will be able to relate to the struggles Greg and Nicole experience. The ending felt a little unreal but otherwise good. I look forward to reading book five in the series.

Dave and Neta Jackson are award-winning authors living in the Chicago area where their parallel novels from the Yada Yada House of Hope and Harry Bentley series are set.
As a husband/wife writing team, Dave and Neta Jackson are enthusiastic about books, kids, walking with God, gospel music, and each other! Together they are the authors or coauthors of over 100 books.
Find out more about Dave and Neta at

Review copy provided by Litfuse in exchange for an honest review.

Christmas at Rose Hill Farm by Suzanne Woods Fisher (Review)

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (September 2, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800721930

Bess Riehl is preparing Rose Hill Farm for her Christmas wedding, but her groom isn't who she thought it would be. Billy Lapp is far away from his Amish roots working as a rose rustler for Penn State and wants nothing to do with Stoney Ridge, his family, or Bess. And that suits Bess just fine. Why should she think twice about a man who left without a word, without any explanation? It's time she moved on with her life, and that meant saying yes to Amos Lapp, Billy's cousin and best friend. But as Bess and Amos's wedding day draws near, her emotions tangle into a tight knot. She loves Amos. Yet she can't forget Billy.

When a "lost" rose is discovered at Rose Hill Farm, Billy is sent to track down its origins. Get in, identify the rose, and get out. That's his plan. The only catch is that he's having a hard time narrowing down the identity of the lost rose, and he can't get those tropical blue eyes of Bess Riehl out of his mind.

As the history of the lost rose is pieced together, it reminds Bess and Billy--and Amos, too--that Christmas truly is the season of miracles.

Join bestselling, award-winning author Suzanne Woods Fisher for an Amish Christmas to remember. Filled with heart-twisting moments amid the sweet anticipation of love, this story will charm readers into the holiday spirit.

 My Review:

I enjoyed reading this Amish Christmas Love story. The characters and plot were well developed and interesting. The love triangle was Bess, Billy, and Amos. Bess is a sweet Amish girl who is in love with Billy. He left the Amish years ago due to a misunderstanding and family issues.She never forgot him or stopped loving him. He became a rose rustler and lived among the English. Amos is Billy's cousin and loves Bess too. After Billy disappeared Amos started courting Bess. He finally got Bess to commit to a wedding date. Enter Billy right before the wedding. He came back because Bess found a possible "lost rose" on her grandmother's rose farm. Bess realized she still loved him but he was like a porcupine. The romance between Bess and Billy was great. I felt so bad for Amos but the chemistry between Bess and Billy was undeniable. The author uses flashbacks to tell part of the story. They were necessary but not always welcome.  The main theme of forgiveness came through nicely. I highly recommend all of this author's Amish stories.

 Writing, for Suzanne, is a way to express a love of God and His word. With every book or article, she hopes readers get a sense of what faith really looks like in the daily grind. She hopes they realize that life can be hard, but God is good, and never to confuse the two.

Suzanne can be found on-line at:

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Christmas Cat by Melody Carlson (Review)

  • Hardcover: 176 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (September 9, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800719661

After years abroad, Garrison Brown returns home to Vancouver to build a new life. When his beloved grandmother passes away a few weeks before Christmas, Garrison goes to her house to sort out her belongings, including six cats who need new homes. While Garrison hopes to dispense with the task quickly, his grandmother's instructions don't allow for speed. She has left Garrison with some challenging requirements for the future homes of her furry friends--plus a sizable monetary gift for the new owners. Garrison's job is to match the cats with the right owners without disclosing the surprise gift. Along the way, he may just meet someone who can make him stay.

Humorous and heartwarming, this latest Christmas story from bestselling author Melody Carlson is the perfect gift for pet lovers and anyone in whose heart Christmas holds a special place.

My Review: 

I enjoyed reading this sweet contemporary Christmas novella. We have three cats at my house that are spoiled rotten so I was interested in this plot line. I was not disappointed. The book held my attention from beginning to end. The author did a good job on telling the story from Garrison, a male, point of view. The story centers on Garrison inheriting his grandmother's six cats. She left very specific instructions on how to find them new homes. At first he plans on just giving them away easy but as the book goes on he finds himself getting very attached to them. He follows his grandmother's wishes and made friends along the way. One of which might end up being the love of his life. This was a touching Christmas story. The ending was satisfying and fit the book. Recommended.

 Melody Carlson is the award-winning author of over two hundred books with sales of more than five million. She is the author of several Christmas books, including the bestselling The Christmas Bus, The Christmas Dog, and Christmas at Harrington's, as well as The Christmas Pony and A Simple Christmas Wish. She received a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award in the inspirational market for her many books, including the Diary of a Teenage Girl series and Finding Alice. She and her husband live in central Oregon. Learn more at

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.

Trading Secrets by Melody Carlson (Review)

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (October 21, 2014)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800722272

The truth may set you free--but it might also land you in some uncomfortably hot water.

Over the years, Micah Knight has exchanged many letters--and many secrets--with her longtime Amish pen pal, Zach. But Micah's kept quiet on the biggest secret of all--the fact that despite her name, she's a girl.

Now Micah finally has the chance to meet her pen pal face-to-face. She wants nothing more than to experience life on Zach's Amish farm, but she's more than a little anxious. Will he be angry at her for deceiving him all these years? And will she risk losing his friendship to find something more?

My Review:

I thought this was a light book with an interesting concept. It is an young adult book with an Amish twist. Micah is English and her pen pal Zach is Amish. They have exchanged letters for years. She never came out and told him she was a girl. Now they are teenagers and Zach invites her to come to the farm. He did not know she deceived him until she got there. He did not react in a good way. Things did not get any better either for a while. I thought his actions went on for too long and were unbelievable. His Amish family also did not behave like the ones I am used too in this kind of book.One of his sisters helped her when she could. In the whole book his parents never warmed up to her.  Micah was the best developed character in the book. I was a little surprised at the ending but happy. Recommended for fans of the genre.

Melody Carlson is the award-winning author of more than two hundred books, including the Dating Games series, the Life at Kingston High series, Double Take, A Simple Song, and My Amish Boyfriend. She has received a Romantic Times Career Achievement Award for her many books, including the Diary of a Teenage Girl series and Finding Alice. Melody and her husband live in Oregon. Learn more at

Review copy provided by publisher in exchange for an honest review.