Flooded Book Review

In Flooded Nicki Koziarz looks at the biblical account of Noah and five decisions he made. Decisions we, too, can make to help quiet fear, resist the urge to try and control the uncontrollable, and find the familiar faithfulness of God when everything is falling apart.

Through examples she shows us:

  1. Noah was able to rise above the doubt his assignment could have caused by making the decision to walk with God.
  2. Noah listened and obeyed whether he agreed with God or not.
  3. Noah didn’t try to make sense of what God asked him to do.
  4. Noah remembered who was in control and believed God had a plan.
  5. Noah held to the familiar faithfulness of God when he stepped off the ark.

Using events from her own life interspersed throughout the book, Nicki shows how, like Noah, she worked through these decisions.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my March Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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The Moonlight School Book Review

The Moonlight School by Suzanne Woods Fisher is an historical fiction novel inspired by true events in the life of Cora Wilson Stewart in 1911 Rowan County, Eastern Kentucky. Set against a landscape devastated by lumber companies, and faced with poverty and illiteracy, we meet Lucy Wilson, her cousin Cora, Brother Wyatt, and a cast of endearing mountain folk. I especially liked young Finley James.

The story takes us along with Lucy as she leaves her father and stepmother in Lexington, to help Cora combat poverty by eliminating illiteracy. What Lucy doesn’t leave behind, though, are memories of the day her young sister disappeared. As Lucy interacts with the people of Rowan County, she comes to understand, just because a person does not have money, that does not mean they are poor.

If you enjoy Appalachian historical fiction with heart, such as books written by Ann H. Gabhart, then The Moonlight School may just be the book for you.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my February Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

Shadows of the White City Book Review

Set in Chicago during the 1893 World’s Fair, Shadows of the White City by Jocelyn Green, begins thirteen years earlier when Sylvie Townsend agrees to take care of the young daughter of a desperate immigrant from Poland, whose wife died during their voyage to America. Now, at seventeen, Rose Dabrowski disappears at the World’s Fair. This sets off a heart felt story filled with deceit, loyalty, deception, loss, sacrifice, and love amidst a wide ranging cast of characters.

With the help of her boarder, Kristof Bartok, Sylvie searches through the streets of Chicago for her adopted daughter. When Rose is found, however, all is not resolved. Decisions must be made which threaten the very thing Sylvie holds most dear.

Jocelyn Green is a master of descriptive writing, adding historical detail to every story she writes. Shadows of the White City is no exception. Within these pages you experience the great expanse and magnificence of 1893 Chicago World’s Fair, as you walk through it with the book’s characters.

If you enjoy well-written historical fiction with a touch of romance, then Shadows of the White City by Jocelyn Green is the book for you.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my February Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

A Cowboy For Keeps Book Review

Set in Colorado Territory in 1862, A Cowboy for Keeps by Jody Hedlund tells the story of Greta Nilsson, a mail order bride who cares for her sickly younger sister, and rancher Wyatt McQuaid. After Greta arrives in Fairplay, Colorado, she must adjust her plans. Penniless following her stagecoach robbery, and learning her intended husband is dead, she is left with no few options. When her intended’s friend, Wyatt McQuaid, proposes marriage, Greta agrees.

A Cowboy for Keeps has heroes and villains, moments of hope and times of despair, characters to root for and those to despise. Sprinkled throughout the book are Scripture references to guide Greta and Wyatt on their journey of decision-making.

Although I enjoyed the dialog between Wyatt and Greta as their relationship developed, which gave a glimpse into who they were, the repetitious internal self-doubt and introspection often pulled me out of the story.

A Cowboy for Keeps is a book for those who enjoy Christian historical fiction marriage of convenience tales.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my January Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

Tidewater Bride Book Review

Tidewater Bride by Laura Frantz has us rooting for Selah Hopewell and Xander Renick as they navigate their world of English settlers and Powhatan Naturals amidst tobacco farms, treachery, loss, and love in James Towne, Virginia Colony in 1634.

Well researched historical details give readers a glimpse into what it was like to live in this time and place. While the use of archaic words lent realism and flavor to the book, it also sent me looking up the meaning of fortnight.

Although I looked forward to scenes where Selah and Xander interacted, I occasionally questioned the inclusion of other scenes and the relevance of certain characters to the story. There were times the actions of younger characters did not seem to fit their ages, and times the story felt amiss. The ending, to me, was abrupt.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

You can find my January Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

The Bible Recap Book Review

At 751 pages and one and a half inches thick, The Bible Recap: A One-Year Guide to Reading and Understanding the Entire Bible by Tara-Leigh Cobble is an absolute must- have Bible resource. Whether you grew up reading the Bible, or are just dipping your toes in the water, I cannot recommend this book highly enough.

As I flipped through the pages of this book, I realized this one-year plan, written in English Standard Version, follows a chronological order. I love that! When I study the Bible, I like to have a clear view of the history that brought us to each point. This study guide makes that easier to achieve. Some select chapters have links for additional information on the reading.

Each day there are multiple chapters of a book of the Bible to read. Don’t get lazy and skip this part. Read the Scriptures. Sure. Tara-Leigh’s commentary explains what’s going on, but read the select chapters first and see what God has in them for you.

After reading your Bible, go back to The Bible Recap for a summary and commentary on the chapters. At the end of the commentary there is a section called Today’s God Shot which points out God’s attributes revealed in that passage.

Although biblically sound and solid, The Bible Recap does not make you feel as if you are slogging through a scholarly tome. Tara-Leigh’s writing style is conversational and easy-going. Her chapters read as if she is sitting next to you, the two of you are discussing the Scripture passages, how they fit together, and gaining new insights about our awesome God.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my December Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Half the Battle: Healing Your Hidden Hurts Book Review

As is true with most things, there are good and not so good. I found this to be the case with Half the Battle: Healing Your Hidden Hurts by Dr. Jon Chasteen.

First the good.

Dr. Chasteen points out most of us are engaged in a battle of some kind, saying we all have hurts and wounds. Before we fight external battles, he says we must fight the internal battles we hide and cover up.

He states the only way to truly rid ourselves of the shame and guilt of these hidden wounds is to invite God into them, allow him to take his knife to the wound, and let him remove it.

The majority of the book talks about wounded, rejected people. In the final chapters Dr. Chasteen compares the World War I and the story of Gideon to facing our battles today in the light of Jesus as our guide, in the unity of believers, and with praise.

There is a study guide at the back of the book with additional questions for consideration.

Now the not so good.

I found the way the author wandered back and forth through various scriptures to prove his point extremely disjointed and distracting.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Blog About Bloggers Network for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave. Leave a comment between October 8, 2020 and October 14, 2020 for an opportunity to receive a free copy of the book. Winner will be notified by October 20, 2020.

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

Prevail Book Review

Beginning with Genesis 12:7 and ending with Revelation 22:12-13, Prevail: 365 Days of Enduring Strength from God’s Word by Susie Larson gives readers exactly what the title promises; enduring strength from God’s word.

Reading Prevail is like talking with a trusted friend about your problems, fears, and doubts, knowing she will point you to God’s truths without the least bit of ridicule or condemnation.

Although I appreciate the way Prevail works its way sequentially through the Bible, I especially appreciate the Table of Contents which lists each devotion by subject. I find that helpful when looking for a devotion that addresses a specific need.

Each devotion has a highlighted verse, meaningful commentary of the Scripture that speaks to the reader in a personable, encouraging way, and points the reader to God. This is followed by the Scripture reference the devotion came from for further study, an application statement, and short prayer. The pages are beautiful. Swirls of varying pastels adorn each page. I found that soothing.

I highly recommend Prevail: 365 Days of Enduring Strength from God’s Word for those seeking more from their daily devotional.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

You can find my September Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

Fascinating Bible Studies on Every Parable Book Review

In the introduction to his book, Fascinating Bible Studies on Every Parable, Dr. William H. Marty states the purpose for the book is to help readers understand Jesus’ parables–what Jesus intended to teach, and the response he expected–and then to suggest how we can apply Christ’s parables to our lives today. I found this book easy to digest and absorb without being simplistic. While we may be familiar with Jesus’ parables, there is always something new to consider in reading them.

In short, concise chapters for each parable, Dr. Marty does just that. He lists the Bible reference for the parable, gives his takeaway in one short sentence, explains the parable in its historical and cultural setting, and ends with questions for reflection related to the parable. The parables are organized into two broad categories. The nature of the kingdom, and the ethics of the kingdom.

Dr. Marty believes in reading a parable, we should first consider what the story meant to Jesus’ audience, not to those of us who live in twentieth century America. Good advice. He also states the purpose of Jesus’ parables was not to entertain, but to challenge and impress on his followers the need to change their mindset about how they related to God and others. More good advice.

You can find my September Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.

An Appalachian Summer Book Review

An Appalachian Summer by Ann H. Gabhart, set in Appalachian Kentucky during the Depression of 1933, is a wonderful book filled with relatable characters who face challenges without giving up.

Piper Danson is faced with deciding whether she should go along with her father’s decision she marry a man she’s not met before to secure her financial future, or marry the man she has loved since they were children with little prospect of financial support.

To give herself time and space to think without either of the men around, Piper leaves her home with all its comforts in Louisville to volunteer as a Frontier Nursing horseback courier in the mountains where comforts as she’s known them are replaced with an awareness of God’s beauty and presence.

An Appalachian Summer skillfully draws readers into the world of the Frontier Nurses, the couriers, and the people of the mountains, presenting each as an individual with hopes, dreams, needs, and resilience.

I highly recommend this book for those who want to read a heartfelt story well told.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

You can find my July Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks.