So, as with so many good intentions, I got way behind on my reading and posting book reviews. It just occurred to me that there is no better re-entry point than the Book I am currently reading. Every January I try to choose a new Bible reading plan that will take me through the Bible in one year. I have accomplished this feat several times, but the last few years have been slightly overwhelming. This year, I found the Archaeological Study Bible. I already know that I will not likely make it through its entirety before December 31 makes its cold appearance. The reason, however, is not that I am losing interest or “getting behind.” I am thoroughly absorbed in The Story. The historical footnotes and the archaeological articles on almost every page are utterly fascinating, and instead of reading for “the check mark” on the day’s reading assignment, I am slowly digesting the portions I can fit in to my daily schedule. For the first time ever, I was disappointed that I had come to the end of Deuteronomy- sad that there were no more Moses stories to look forward to, yet excited to see what Joshua had in store for me. This is no small thing for someone who knows the stories inside and out and gets bored easily with the re-telling. I am LOVING the fresh excitement I have found as the Scripture comes to life with the customs of the time and the historical comparisons to other cultures of the era.
The Archaeological Study Bible is available in several translations. If you want to revitalize your devotion or study time and you enjoy history and cultures, this just may be your solution!
Elizabeth Musser is quickly working her way onto my favorite authors list. This final part of the Secrets of the Cross Trilogy brought mixed emotions- anticipation to finally read the rest of the story and disappointment to turn the final page. Originally published in French, Secrets of the Cross is being republished in English to a brand new audience of readers.
Two Destinies brings us once again to Montpellier, France and Algiers, Algeria. This time the year is 1994, and Ophelie Duchemin and her half brother Eric Hoffman are young adults navigating the realities of the growing Islamic/Christian culture clash in southern France. As Ophelie is drawn to helping the homeless, Eric falls in love with Rislene, an Algerian Christian convert. When Rislene’s sister discovers the Bible under her mattress, their father sends both girls back to Algeria to live with their grandmother while a suitable Islamic husband can be found for Rislene.
Get up right now and get this book- or the entire series! Discover the fascinating world of North African culture during a time of struggle for independence from France and the ensuing battle for Islamic control.
First of all, let me say that for Christian Fiction you can’t go wrong with Gilbert Morris. Ever. He just has a way of bringing historical time periods to life.
Set in Memphis, Tennesse during the Gilded Age, The River Rose includes everything one would associate with the time period: river boats, crime, political scandal, racial and gender prejudice, and class distinction.
Jeanne Bettencourt and Clint Hardin are very distant relatives who know nothing of each other until they are both summoned to Attorney Nate Deshler’s office to be informed, together, that they are the heirs of the Helena Rose, a Mississippi River boat. With their combined experience, she as the daughter of a river boat captain and he with mechanical experience, they decide to put aside their mistrust and live and work together on the boat. The antics and scandal that follow their decision make for an entertaining story that will take you back to a slower, fascinating time in American history.
Louisiana Bayou. Gourmet Cooking. Small town life. Murder by cyanide poisoning.
After fleeing his abusive father and changing his identity, Sax Landry now plays the saxophone in a New Orleans jazz band. Years pass and Sax receives word that his mother and father are both dead. After an intense internal struggle, he pursues the sister he left behind. Will he find her? Will she forgive him?
I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book. Kathy Herman has my attention, and I am eager to read more from her. The characters are not only believable, they are your family and neighbors. Conversation flows naturally and is not contrived. Having grown up on the Gulf Coast, I enjoyed escaping for a few hours to the Bayou!
Lauraine Snelling is a captivating author, and this book written for younger girls hits the mark.
Sarah lives near Mt. St. Helens with her parents, her sister, and Cimarron her horse. When the volcano erupts, everyone is forced to evacuate immediately…no horses allowed. As the days drag by and Sarah’s concern for Cimarron reaches its own eruption point, Sarah loses faith in God. How could He allow this to happen? With no end in sight for this terrible tragedy, Sarah devises her own plan to return to her home and save Cimarron.
This journey of young faith and growing compassion for others is a sure win with adolescent girls. Whether you need a book report book once school starts or a rainy-day diversion for a boring summer day, you won’t be disappointed with What About Cimarron?
Kristen Connor is a detective that everybody likes, including the serial killer that has suddenly stepped up his game. From her witty interaction with her family to her impressive self-defense skills, you will fall in love with Detective Kristen Connor!
M.K. Gilroy introduces us to his new heroine in Cuts Like a Knife, the first book of his Kristen Connor mystery series. With action, drama, family dynamics, and a little bit of romance, this is a great book to spend a few hours with!
“God bless America, land that I love. Stand beside her and guide her through the night, with the light from above.”
I love America- you can’t really love something/someone until you have experienced their faults and imperfections. Before that, it’s infatuation. True love has experienced the faults and chooses to love the whole package, imperfections and all. God, please bless America!
She’s not perfect, and she is making some choices to wander away from God’s principles, but I am thankful to be a citizen of the USA- a country founded for religious freedom where we still enjoy many more civil liberties than are allowed in other nations. Good nations, with a lot of positive things going for them…but they still do not have the same liberty we have on American soil.
For better or worse, parents can direct the upbringing, discipline, and education of their children with minimal government interference. We can truly worship as we choose, wherever we choose, gathering in large groups in public without fear of being arrested. We can post heated opinions about our government leaders on Facebook, in newspapers, and on other public forums without fear of imprisonment. We can go into debt to “live the American dream” or we can work hard, sacrifice in the short term, and save for the possibility of passing it on to our children. Whether our choices are right or wrong, good or bad, Christian principled or not- they are our choices, and we are free to make them and free to live with the consequences (good and bad) of our freedom.
Today, I am thankful for the patriots that have given their lives to preserve the DREAM.
America the Beautiful
Words by Katharine Lee Bates,
Melody by Samuel Ward
O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!
O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare of freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!
O beautiful for heroes proved
In liberating strife.
Who more than self their country loved
And mercy more than life!
May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness
And every gain divine!
O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!
World War 2 is over and the lines of power are being redrawn. The Middle East is poised to become the world’s oil supplier, and a handful of people are positioning to control the market. Will the Sentinels be able to expose the plot and raise enough international political and financial support to stop the evil?
Filled with political intrigue and a fascinating plot, this book should be a masterpiece. However, it reads more like a documentary than a novel, and as much as I like to read and hate to not finish a book I’ve started, this one challenged my attention span to the limit. I wanted so much to like it and kept pushing myself to become immersed in the story, but it just isn’t an attention keeper. I did force myself to finish it because I really wanted to like this book. All of the elements are there – interesting characters, locale, international politics, nefarious activity – but it just doesn’t come together.
If you are interested in the subject matter, by all means, read the book; but if you are looking for a well-written, attention-keeping novel, I can’t recommend this one. And it hurts me to say so. Did I mention that I REALLY wanted to like this one?
365 days. 365 different soup recipes. What’s not to love? Organized in calendar format, the recipes make use of easy to find, seasonal ingredients. I am trying to convince my family to take a 365 day soup challenge. Okay, so maybe we would get tired of soup for dinner every day for a year, but so far all the recipes I’ve tried out on them have been keepers. So far, our favorites are the Coconut Broth with Udon Noodles and Shrimp (I substituted chicken since we had shrimp the day before) and the Lobster and Sweet Corn Chowder (I substituted shrimp for convenience but will definitely try again with lobster).
I like recipe books, but only one other time have I found one that I like so much I would purchase as gifts for my friends. This is definitely a recipe book that I highly recommend for your kitchen. There are some recipe books that you have on your shelf to make guests think are a serious chef; there are some recipe books that you actually use on a regular basis. This one will both impress your guests and be a regular go-to resource for delicious additions to your entertaining meals and hearty one-pot meals for your family.
Jonas Love is an FBI agent with regrets and some unrequested down time.
Carver Love is a successful rancher with a Texas-size ego and a soft spot for the beautiful sheriff.
Lucas Love is a business owner with an addiction to adrenaline and a fear of marriage.
Justin Love is a bounty hunter with an attitude and a secret agenda.
Four brothers. Four women. Four troubles.
An enjoyable summer escape to the Oregon Outback. It is always a pleasure to visit places you’ve never been before, and Elizabeth Goddard has chosen a location not many writers have explored. The unfamiliar, rugged setting makes the stories of the Love brothers all that much more interesting. This one should definitely make your short list for summer vacation reading.