Friday, August 31, 2012

RIP VII Sign up Post


RIP VII is hosted by Carl at Stainless Steel Droppings. This is now in its seventh year. I have particpated before and enjoyed it. I am doing Peril the Third which is read one book in the following genres. I have not been reading as much this year so I don't want to overwhelm myself. For more information please visit his blog.

The purpose of R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril VII is to enjoy books and movies/television that could be classified (by you) as:
Dark Fantasy.

Or anything sufficiently moody that shares a kinship with the above.
I have removed the word “challenge” from this event because it has never really fit. “Challenge” was the lingo back when I first discovered book blogs thus its previous addition to the reading events I host. While I don’t have any personal grudge against folks challenging themselves to read a certain number of books, or books outside their comfort zone, this event is primarily about the great pleasure that can be found in embracing this type of fiction/non-fiction during this season of the year.

There are two simple goals for R.eaders I.mbibing P.eril VII
1. Have fun reading.
2. Share that fun with others.

As I do each and every year, there are multiple levels of participation (Perils) that allow you to be a part of R.I.P. VII without adding the burden of another commitment to your already busy lives. There is even a one book only option for those who feel that this sort of reading is not their cup of tea (or who have many other commitments) but want to participate all the same.
R.I.P. VII officially runs from September 1st through October 31st. But lets go ahead and break the rules. Lets start today!!!
Multiple perils await you. You can participate in just one, or participate in them all.

I am choosing Peril the Third which is read one book but I will probably read more than that. :)

Monday, August 27, 2012

Living in Harmony by Mary Ellis

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Living in Harmony
Harvest House Publishers (August 1, 2012)
Mary Ellis


Mary Ellis is the author of many books, including A Widow's Hope,
Sarah's Christmas Miracle, and A Marriage for Meghan. She and her
husband live in central Ohio, where they try to live a simpler style of life.

She was a finalist in the ACFW Carol Awards for A Widow's Hope in
2010, and the 3inner of the Award of Merit in the Holt Medallion Awards
for A Widow's Hope in 2010.


Living in Harmony is the first book in bestselling author Mary Ellis's New Beginnings series. It's about fresh starts and love...and how faith in God and His perfect plan for our lives provides us with the peace and joy we desire.

Amy King--young, engaged, and Amish--faces difficult challenges in her life when she suddenly loses both of her parents in a house fire. Her fiancé, John Detweiler, persuades her and her sister Nora to leave Lancaster County and make a new beginning with him in Harmony, Maine, where he has relatives who can help the women in their time of need.

John's brother Thomas and sister-in-law Sally readily open their home to the three newcomers. Wise beyond his years, Thomas, a minister in the district, refuses to marry Amy and John upon their arrival, suggesting instead a period of adjustment and counseling.

During this time Amy discovers an aunt who was shunned. She wishes to reconnect with her, but this puts a strain on her relationship with John.

Can John and Amy find a way to live in happily in Harmony before making a lifetime commitment to one another?

Watch the book trailer for Living in Harmony:

If you would like to read the first chapter of Living in Harmony, go HERE.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The Stars Shine Bright by Sibella Giorello (Review)

After the FBI suspends her for bending its rules, Special Agent Raleigh Harmon is looking for a chance to redeem her career and re-start her life.

Sent undercover to a thoroughbred horse track, Raleigh takes on a double life to find out who’s fixing the races. But when horses start dying and then her own life is threatened, Raleigh realizes something bigger—and more sinister—is ruining Emerald Meadows.

She’s never felt more alone.

Her one contact with the FBI is Special Agent Jack Stephanson, a guy who seems to jump from antagonistic to genuine friend depending on the time of day. And she can’t turn to her family for support. They’re off-limits while she’s undercover, and her mother isn’t speaking to her anyway, having been confined to a mental hospital following a psychotic breakdown. Adding insult to her isolation, Raleigh’s fiancé wants them to begin their life together—now—precisely when she’s been ordered not to be herself.

With just days left before the season ends, Raleigh races to stop the killing and find out who’s behind the track’s trouble, all the while trying to determine if Jack is friend or foe, and whether marrying her fiancé will make things better—or worse.

Raleigh is walking through the darkest night she’s faced, searching for a place where the stars shine bright.

My Review:
This is the fifth book in the Raleigh Harmon series and I have read all of them. I love this whole series but if necessary this book can stand alone. Raleigh is an unusual interesting main character. She starts off as being a forensic geologist for the FBI then things happen in previous books that change that. In the start of this book she is on probation with the FBI from what happened on a cruise ship in the last book. In this book she goes undercover at a race track. This author's writing is beautiful and descriptive. All aspects of the book come alive including the characters, plot, and scenery. There is a mystery aspect to this book but it really gets active toward the end. The middle part of the book deals with Raleigh and her different relationships including Jack the other FBI agent she often clashes with and never knows if she can really trust him. Her mother suffers from mental problems and is put in a hospital. Her fiance from back home also makes an appearance so Raleigh has her hands full.  I enjoyed reading this book and can't wait for the next book in the series. Recommended.
Sibella Giorello grew up in the mountains of Alaska admiring the beauty and nature that surrounded her. She majored in geology at Mount Holyoke College in Massachusetts hoping to learn more about the landscape she loved back home. From there Sibella followed a winding path, much like the motorcycle ride she took across the country, which led to her true love, journalism. 

She found herself in Seattle writing for rock-n-roll magazine and earned a journalism degree from the University of Washington before heading south to the land of great stories.

In Virginia, Sibella became a features writer for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. It was there she also met her husband and would hear Jesus whispering her name at a tent revival.

Sibella started writing about Raleigh Harmon as a way to keep her love of story-telling alive while staying at home with her young sons. As a journalist and author, her stories have won state and national awards, including two nominations for the Pulitzer Prize. The Stones Cry Out, the first Raleigh Harmon novel, won a Christy award for debut novel in 2008. Sibella now lives in Washington state with her husband and sons.

Visit Sibella Giorello online at, Facebook or Twitter.
Review copy provided by Litfuse Publicity in exchange for an honest review.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Dying to Read by Lorena McCourtney (Review)

  • Paperback: 320 pages

  • Publisher: Revell (August 1, 2012)

  • ISBN-13: 978-0800721589

  • All she wanted was a paycheck. What she got was a murder.
    Cate Kinkaid's life is . . . well, frankly it's floundering. Her social life, her career, her haircut--they're all a mess. Unemployed, she jumps at the chance to work for her PI uncle, even though she has no experience and no instincts. After all, she is just dabbling in the world of private investigating until she can find a "real" job.

    All she has to do for her first assignment is determine that a particular woman lives at a particular address. Simple, right? But when she reaches the dark Victorian house, she runs into an hungry horde of gray-haired mystery readers and a dead body. This routine PI job is turning out to be anything but simple. Is Cate in over her head?

    My Review:
    I enjoyed reading this Christian cozy mystery. It is the first in the Cate Kincaid series. It was well written with lively characters. There is some humor in the story too which really adds to it. I figured out some of the mystery but not all and it did not detract from the book for me. A cute male sidekick makes an appearance too. :) Recommended.

    Lorena McCourtney is the award-winning author of dozens of novels, including Invisible (which won the Daphne du Maurier Award from Romance Writers of America), In Plain Sight, On the Run, and Stranded. She resides in Oregon.

    Available now wherever Baker/Revell books are sold.

    Thank you Donna at Revell for my review copy.

    Sunday, August 19, 2012

    The Haven by Suzanne Woods Fisher(Review)

  • Paperback: 314 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (August 1, 2012)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800719883

  • Spring brings new life, young love, and second chances to Stoney Ridge.
    On a warm spring day, Sadie Lapp returns home to her quiet, unassertive life in Stoney Ridge after spending the winter in Ohio.

    Gideon Smucker, an awkward schoolteacher, has been in love with Sadie since childhood and eagerly awaits her return. But does Sadie feel the same about him?

    Will Stoltz, a charming and impetuous college student, has been banished for a semester and sent to babysit endangered peregrine falcons nesting at the Lapp farm. He'd rather be anywhere else . . . until he befriends Sadie.

    As the hopes and ambitions of these three young people converge, life in Stoney Ridge may never be the same.

    Once again, bestselling author Suzanne Woods Fisher intrigues and delights with a story that explores the bonds of friendship, family, and true love in this captivating series.

    My Review:
    This is the second book in the Stoney Ridge series and I liked it as much as the first. I recommend reading them in order because they have the same main characters and some of the plot lines are continued. They are Amish books but are well written and the plot is not super typical. The characters are great and stand out. I love Mary Kate, Sadie's younger sister, and her antics. There were several lol moments in the book along with some more serious issues. I really enjoyed reading this book and can't wait for the next book in the series to come out. Recommended. :)

    Suzanne Woods Fisher is the bestselling author of The Choice, The Waiting, The Search, and The Keeper, as well as nonfiction books about the Amish, including Amish Peace. She is also the coauthor of a new Amish children's series, The Adventures of Lily Lapp. Suzanne is the host of internet radio show Amish Wisdom and a columnist for Christian Post and Cooking & Such magazines. She lives in California.

    Available now wherever Revell/Baker books are sold.

    Thank you Donna at Revell/Baker for my review copy.

    Monday, August 13, 2012

    Lethal Legacy by Irene Hannon (Review)

  • Paperback: 351 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (August 1, 2012)
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800734589

    From the Back Cover

    A determined daughter . . .
    A skeptical detective . . .
    A deadly secret . . .

    The police say her father's death was suicide. Kelly Warren says it was murder--and she has new evidence to prove it. Detective Cole Taylor doesn't put much credence in her claim, and nothing in his case review suggests foul play. But when he digs deeper (delete dash) and discovers startling information linking her to a long-buried secret, the danger escalates. Is history repeating itself? And who wants Kelly silenced?

    Praise for Irene Hannon and the Guardians of Justice Series
    "Storytelling at its best."--Dee Henderson on Fatal Judgment
    "Riveting."--RT Book Reviews on Fatal Judgment
    "Compelling characters and an emotionally engaging plot powered by a surfeit of nail-biting suspense."--Booklist on Deadly Pursuit
    "A surefire mix of suspense, action, and romance." on Deadly Pursuit
    "A don't-put-me-down type of book."--The Suspense Zone on Deadly Pursuit

    My Review:
    I loved this Christian romantic suspense book. This is my favorite genre and one of the best authors of it. This is the third book in the Guardians of Justice series but can be read on its own. You do learn a few more details about characters from the previous books. I loved the whole series. They are well written with developed characters and plot lines. Recommended. :)

    About the Author

    Irene Hannon is the author of more than 35 novels, including the bestselling Heroes of Quantico and Guardians of Justice series. Her books have been honored with two coveted RITA awards from Romance Writers of America, a Carol Award, HOLT Medallion, a Daphne du Maurier Award, and two Reviewers' Choice Awards from RT Book Reviews magazine. Booklist also included one of her novels in its "Top 10 Inspirational Fiction" list for 2011. She lives in Missouri.

    For more information about her and her books, Irene invites you to visit her web site at

    Available now wherever Baker/Revell books are sold.

    Thank you Donna at Revell for my review copy.

    A Sweethaven Homecoming by Courtney Walsh

    This week, the
    Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
    is introducing
    A Sweethaven Homecoming
    Guideposts (August 2012)
    Courtney Walsh


    Courtney Walsh is a published author, scrapbooking expert, theatre director and playwright. Her debut novel, A Sweethaven Summer, was released in February, 2012 by Guideposts Books, and will be followed by two additional novels in the series. She has also written two papercrafting books, Scrapbooking Your Faith and The Busy Scrapper and is currently working on her third, The Scrapcrafter’s Idea Book (F&W Publications, February, 2013.)

    Courtney has been a contributing editor for Memory Makers Magazine and Children’s Ministry Magazine and is a frequent contributor to Group Publishing curriculum, newsletters and other publications. She has also written several full-length musicals, including her most recent, The Great American Tall Tales and Hercules for Christian Youth Theatre, Chicago. Courtney is a member of ACFW and is the current PR Manager for Webster’s Pages, a scrapbooking manufacturer. She lives in Colorado with her ultra creative husband and three children.


    Suzanne's daughter, Campbell, journeys there in search of answers to her questions about her mother's history.

    Suzanne's three friends-Lila, Jane, and Meghan-were torn apart by long-buried secrets and heartbreak. Though they haven't spoken in years, each has pieces of a scrapbook they made together in Sweethaven.Suzanne's letters have lured them all back to the idyllic lakeside town, where they meet Campbell and begin to remember what was so special about their long Sweethaven summers.

    As the scrapbook reveals secrets one by one, old wounds are mended, lives are changed, and friendships are restored-just as Suzanne intended.

    If you would like to read the first chapter of A Sweethaven Homecoming, go HERE.

    Friday, August 10, 2012

    Perfectly Ridiculous by Kristin Billerbeck (Review)

  • Paperback: 247 pages

  • Publisher: Revell (July 1, 2012)

  • ISBN-13: 978-0800719746
  • Daisy's ready for summer fun--but it seems summer has something else in store.
    High school is over, and Daisy Crispin is happy to leave it in her past and look forward to a bright new future at college. In the meantime, she is planning an all-expenses-paid trip with her best friend Claire to Argentina--home of exotic food, the tango, and her handsome sort-of boyfriend Max.

    When Daisy discovers she needs to do missions work to fulfill the requirements of her scholarship, she chalks it up to her monumental bad luck in life and kisses her vacation goodbye. What was supposed to be a relaxing time in the lap of luxury turns into hard work, sleeping on a cot, avoiding scorpions, and stressing about where she stands with Max. Daisy wonders if anything in her life will ever go according to plan . . .

    My Review:
     I enjoyed reading the third and last book in the Daisy Crispin series. I do recommend reading them in order to understand the characters and plot. This is a Christian young adult book but as a grown woman I liked them too. In this book Daisy is graduating high school and the summer before college headed to Argentina with her best friend Claire. A change of plans has to occur though to fulfill her college scholarship. She has to do some missions work and her parents know a lady they went to college with who has a mission in the same area of Argentina she was supposed to go vacation. For some reason the lady takes an instant dislike to Daisy but loves Claire who is a rich spoiled girl. Daisy is upset by this and has boy troubles among others. This trip is turning out nothing like what she expected. The only part of the story I did feel comfortable with is the ending. I did not feel it fit the characters. I still recommend this series. :)
     About the Author
    Kristin Billerbeck is the bestselling, award-winning author of several novels, including What a Girl Wants, Perfectly Dateless, and Perfectly Invisible. A Christy Award finalist and two-time winner of the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year, Billerbeck has appeared on The Today Show and has been featured in the New York Times. She lives with her family in Northern California.
    Available July, 2012, at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.
    Thank you Donna at Revell for my review copy.

    Monday, August 6, 2012

    Chasing the Wind by Pamela Ewen

    This week, the
    Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
    is introducing
    Chasing The Wind
    B&H Books (August 1, 2012)
    Pamela Ewen


    Until recently retiring to write full time, Pamela Binnings Ewen was a partner in the Houston office of the international law firm of BakerBotts, L.L.P., specializing in corporate finance. She now lives just outside New Orleans, Louisiana, with her husband, James Lott.

    She has served on the Board of Directors of Inprint, Inc., a non-profit organization supporting the literary arts in Houston, Texas, as well as the Advisory Board for The New Orleans Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Society, and currently serves on the Board of Directors of The Tennessee Williams Festival in New Orleans; Pamela is a co-founder of the Northshore Literary Society in the Greater New Orleans area. She is also a member of the National League of American Pen Women.

    Pamela’s first novel, Walk Back The Cat (Broadman & Holman. May, 2006) is the story of an embittered and powerful clergyman who learns an ancient secret, confronting him with truth and a choice that may destroy him.

    She is also the best-selling author of the acclaimed non-fiction book Faith On Trial, published by Broadman & Holman in 1999, currently in its third printing.

    Although it was written for non-lawyers, Faith On Trial was also chosen as a text for a course on law and religion at Yale Law School in the Spring of 2000, along with The Case For Christ by Lee Stroble. Continuing the apologetics begun in Faith On Trial, Pamela also appears with Gary Habermas, Josh McDowell, Darrell Bock, Lee Stroble, and others in the film Jesus: Fact or Fiction, a Campus Crusade for Christ production.

    Pamela is the latest writer to emerge from a Louisiana family recognized for its statistically improbable number of successful authors. A cousin, James Lee Burke, who won the Edgar Award, wrote about the common ancestral grandfathers in his Civil War novel White Dove At Morning.

    Among other writers in the family are Andre Dubus (Best Picture Oscar nomination for The Bedroom; his son, Andre Dubus III, author of The House of Sand and Fog, a Best Picture Oscar nomination and an Oprah pick; Elizabeth Nell Dubus (the Cajun trilogy); and Alafair Burke, just starting out with the well received Samantha Kincaid mystery series.


    At 8:47 A.M. on Wednesday, October 12, 1977, new-to-town businessman Bingham Murdock flew his small plane into New Orleans, banking it in such a way that a ray of sunshine shot through the city at light speed.

    Amalise Catoir saw the flash from her sixteenth floor law office window. Finally feeling alive after the death of her abusive husband, she imagined seeing the plane was a fate for her eyes only; a special connection between the unknown giver and she, the recipient of light.

    But someone else saw it, a six-year-old Cambodian refugee in foster care for whom a sudden burst of brightness reminds him of artillery fire.

    Destined to cross paths with the man and the child, Amalise doesn’t yet know the deeper spiritual lesson she will learn: that we are responsible not only for the things we do, but also for the things that we don’t.

    If you would like to read an excerpt of Chasing The Wind, go HERE.

    Classics Club Spin 18

    My Classics Club Spin List for August This is a hodgepodge of books left on my list I made in 2017 for the Classics Club. Tomorrow the clu...