Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday: The Writing Desk

Waiting On Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine. 
Each week offers the opportunity to spotlight an up and coming release you are most excited about. 

Waiting On:
Title: The Writing Desk
Author: Rachel Hauck
Publisher: Zondervan
Publication Date: July 10th, 2017

Synopsis:
From GoodReads
Tenley Roth’s first book was a literary and commercial success. Now that her second book is due, she’s locked in fear. Can she repeat her earlier success or is she a fraud who merely found a bit of luck?

With pressure mounting from her publisher, Tenley is weighted with writer’s block. But when her estranged mother calls asking Tenley to help her through chemotherapy, she packs up for Florida where she meets handsome furniture designer Jonas Sullivan and discovers the story her heart’s been missing.

Born during the Gilded Age, Birdie Shehorn is the daughter of the old money Knickerbockers. Yet her life is not her own. Under the strict control of her mother, her every move is decided ahead of time, even whom she’ll marry. But Birdie has dreams of her own. She wants to tell stories, write novels, make an impact on the world. When she discovers her mother has literally destroyed her dreams, she must choose between submission and security or forging a brand new way all on her own.

Tenley and Birdie are from two very different worlds. Yet when Tenley discovers Birdie’s manuscript, their lives intersect. Birdie’s words help Tenley find a way home. Tenley brings Birdie’s writing to the world.

Can two women separated by time help fulfill each other’s destiny?
 
Why I'm Waiting:
The idea of this story already has me hooked. Two different eras. It just sounds fun. With the focus on an author makes it even more intriguing.

What are you waiting on this week?


Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Birthday Special

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. 
Each week features a book related topic that offers the ability to spotlight your Top Ten. 

Topic:
Birthday Special

Ok, so...I decided to change up the theme for the week, since tomorrow is my birthday. I wanted to feature books that have just been so fun, it's almost a celebration reading them. I'm not much for birthdays, but I love books, so why not celebrate books!

 1. A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund
2. After a Fashion by Jen Turano
3. The Merchant's Daughter by Melanie Dickerson
4. Stealing the Preacher by Karen Witemeyer
 5. Honor by Lyn Cote
6. Rules of Murder by Julianna Deering
7. Prelude for a Lord by Camille Elliot
8. Meant to Be Mine by Becky Wade
 9. A Match of Wits by Jen Turano
10. The Pursuit of Tamsen Littlejohn  by Lori Benton
11. A Bouquet of Love by Janice Thompson

Each and everyone of these books had something fun and upbeat about them and was just fun to read in one way or another. They are all different genres, but they all had something in common, in that I would reread them all again.

What was your Top Ten this week?

Monday, April 24, 2017

Review: Still Life by Dani Pettrey

Title: Still Life
Author: Dani Pettrey
Publisher: Bethany House
Pages: 352
ISBN: 978-0-7642-1295-6
Publication Date: January 31st, 2017

Synopsis:
Someone Is Out There. Watching Her. Waiting.
Blacklisted in the photography business over a controversial shot, Avery Tate answered an ad for a crime-scene photographer. She expected to be laughed at, but crime-scene analyst Parker Mitchell hired her outright--and changed her life. But six months ago, when her feelings for Parker became too strong, she left his employ to sort out her heart.

Now, for the first time, Avery is facing the world that rejected her to attend the gallery opening of a photography exhibit for which her friend modeled. But the only image of her friend is a chilling photo of her posing as if dead--and the photographer insists he didn't take the shot. Worse, her friend can't be found, and so Avery immediately calls Parker for help.

As Avery, Parker, and their friends in law enforcement dig into the mystery, they find themselves face-to-face with a relentless and deadly threat.
Review:
Still life is the second book in the Chesapeake Valor Series, following Cold Shot. Still Life not only kept the momentum going for the series, but added a lot more to it and made me look forward to the third book in the series, Blind Spot!

Avery Tate was such an interesting character. Even though she faced backlash from a decision of a photo she took, she didn't give up on her passion and sought out a new career field in it. A crime scene photographer is something that is a grisly job. They have to see everything and then some. Dani was able to capture the profession in a respectful way and made it very entertaining.

Parker Mitchell was another fun character to follow along with. He meshed with Avery so well. The romance between the two was fun and the added suspense of the mystery added to the fun of the story and made it very hard to put down.

I loved the photography aspect that was featured in this story. We usually read stories on the detectives, but I really liked that this offered a little more into the world of solving crime. The little details shine through with these stories.

I can't wait for the third book, Blind Spot.

Too Read!
5 out of 5

About the Author:

Dani Pettrey is a wife, home-schooling mom, and the acclaimed author of the Alaskan Courage romantic suspense series, which includes her bestselling novels Submerged, Shattered, Stranded, Silenced, and Sabotaged. Her books have been honored with the Daphne du Maurier award, two HOLT Medallions, two National Readers' Choice Awards, the Gail Wilson Award of Excellence, and Christian Retailing's Best Award, among others. 

She feels blessed to write inspirational romantic suspense because it incorporates so many things she loves--the thrill of adventure, nail-biting suspense, the deepening of her characters' faith, and plenty of romance. She and her husband reside in Maryland, where they enjoy time with their two daughters, a son-in-law, and a super adorable grandson. You can find her online at danipettrey.com.


Thanks to the Author and the publisher, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest review. 

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. 
Each week features a book related topic that offers the opportunity to spotlight your Top Ten. 

Topic:
Top Ten Things That Will Make Me Instantly Want To Read A Book

 This one seems like a fun topic. I gave myself time to think about it and I thought, oh, I won't have a long list. As I started to think more on it, I realized there are several factors I have for choosing a book.

1. An author I love. 
If I found an author I love, I will always go and get the rest of their books.
2. Fellow reviewers.
I follow many other bloggers who love similar types of books. They hear about books, I haven't heard about. And bring new books to my attention.
3. Covers.
A beautiful cover can catch my attention and make me want to read it.
4. Authors.
I love to follow authors and see what they read.
5. GoodReads.
The list of books that are out there. I can get on a roll looking at new books. It brings so many books to my attention. Granted, this is a mix of the previous things listed.
6. Reading the Synopsis.
A pretty cover is nice, but reading what the book is about can snag me even quicker then a cover.


What is your Top Ten this week?

Friday, April 14, 2017

Review: Life After by Katie Ganshert

Title: Life After
Author: Katie Ganshert
Publisher: Waterbrook
Pages: 352
ISBN: 978-1-60142-902-5
Publication Date: April 18th, 2017

Synopsis:
It could have been me.

Snow whirls around an elevated train platform in Chicago. A distracted woman boards the train, takes her seat, and moments later a fiery explosion rips through the frigid air, tearing the car apart in a horrific attack on the city’s transit system. One life is spared. Twenty-two are lost.

A year later, Autumn Manning can’t remember the day of the bombing and she is tormented by grief—by guilt. Twelve months of the question constantly echoing. Why? Why? Why? Searching for answers, she haunts the lives of the victims, unable to rest.

Paul Elliott lost his wife in the train bombing and wants to let the dead rest in peace, undisturbed and unable to cause more pain for his loved ones. He wants normalcy for his twelve-year-old daughter and young son, to see them move beyond the heartbreak. But when the Elliotts and Autumn are unexpectedly forced together, he fears she’ll bring more wreckage in her wake. 

In Life After, Katie Ganshert’s most complex and unforgettable novel yet, the stirring prose and authentic characters pose questions of truth, goodness, and ultimate purpose in this emotionally resonant tale. 
Review: 
Katie Ganshert is an author with an amazing talent. She is able to captivate you with her stories from page one. Life After is a book that jumps off and grips you with the a massive attack in the first part of the book. We then are brought along on a heartbreaking and heart healing journey through the eyes of Autumn and Paul.

Each are suffering from the same tragedy, but from different perspectives.  Autumn is a survivor. Paul lost his wife. Experiencing this from both eyes was something that was new and interesting to experience. Usually, these stories focus on one or the other, I'm glad this book had both.

This story tugged at the emotions. The loss that Paul Elliot experienced is one that a lot of can relate to, in that is a fear that we hope we never experience. The life altered for Autumn is on that isn't thought of a lot. To survive and live with the questions of, "why?" for that tragic even.

The writing of this story was just fantastic. The character development was lifelike and was relatable. The depth of  this book and the detail just enhanced this story. The little aspects that Katie included just enhanced an already wonderful story.

The hope that this story showed is something that was so important to this story. Even though this is Christian Fiction story, it is one I think, fans of different genres would enjoy.

Too Read!
4.5 out of 5

About the Author:
KATIE GANSHERT is the author of several novels and works of short fiction, including the Christy Award-winning A Broken Kind of Beautiful and Carol Award-winner, The Art of Losing Yourself. Katie lives in eastern Iowa with her family.







Thank you to the author and Waterbrook, I received a copy of this book for free in exchange for an honest opinion.

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Top Ten Of The Most Unique Books I've Read

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. 
Each week features a book related topic that offers the opportunity to spotlight your Top Ten. 

Topic:
Top Ten Of The Most Unique Books I've Read

 Unique books are my favorite. They stand out and end up becoming my favorite books. There are many books that pop to mind.

 
1. Prelude for a Lord by Camille Elliot
2. Honor by Lyn Cote
3. The Dandelion Field by Kathryn Springer
4. A Noble Groom by Jody Hedlund
  
 5. Storm Siren by Mary Weber
6. The Sentinels of Andersonville by Tracy Groot
 7. Meant to Be Mine by Becky Wade
8. Dancing with Fireflies by Denise Hunter
9. The Promise by Beth Wiseman
10. Born of Persuasion by Jessica Dotta


 Each and everyone of these stories offered a unique story. They had a gripping story, that popped for multiple reasons. Characters with depth and humanity to them. They are also a list of favorites.


 What was on your Top Ten this week?


Friday, April 7, 2017

Review: Once Upon a Time Bible & Once Upon a Time Story Book Bible

Title: Once Upon a Time Story Book Bible
Illustrated by: Omar Aranda
Publisher: Zonderkidz
Pages: 144
ISBN: 978-0-310-75792-4
Publication Date: March 7th, 2017

Synopsis:
The Bible is not a fairy tale, but every great story happened “once upon a time.” The Once Upon a Time Storybook Bible highlights powerful and inspiring stories from the Bible, beautifully illustrated with fantastical artwork by Omar Aranda. Stories include: Ruth, Abigail, Esther, The Parable of the Lost Sheep, The Prodigal Son, Mary Magdalene, and many more. Each captivating story is told in a way that will get children excited about reading the tales of real heroes of the Bible.



Title: Once Upon a Time Holy Bible
Illustrator: Omar Aranda
Publisher: Zonderkidz
Pages: 1152
ISBN: 978-0-310-75790-0
Publication Date: March 7th, 2017

Synopsis:
The Bible is not a fairy tale, but every great story happened once upon a time. The NIrV Once Upon a Time Holy Bible contains a presentation page and also highlights six great stories from the Bible on 24 full-color inserts. Each story is told on four pages in full-color, illustrated splendor. Also contains the complete New International Reader's Version (NIrV) of the Bible.
 

Stories include:

God Makes Man and Woman
Isaac and Rebekah
Ruth Finds Happiness
Queen Esther
Mary and Joseph and an Angel
He Lives!
We all have our own tale to live and what better place to look for help and encouragement than the greatest story of all.
 Review:
I have had the pleasure of getting to review these two similar, but different Bibles. And thankfully, I had my kiddo help me go through both of them. 

Since there are two, I was going to highlight each of them in small sections. 

Once Upon a Time Story Book Bible is a beautifully illustrated book.  The colors are vivid and the pictures are inviting and make the stories pop with the detail. The story highlighted throughout are very good and ones that everyone will know, so they are good stories to jump off with for younger kids. The stories are good for further conversations of the stories and also offer a nice visual for younger children. The kiddo and I are both visual, so the pictures were nice to look at together. 

Once Upon a Time Holy Bible was fantastic Bible. So, much so, that my kiddo has requested to use it for her Bible class in school. The illustration is similar to that in the Story Book Bible and highlights special Biblical stories, but also gives the full text which allows older kids to dive further into studying on their own. The NiRV translation is a very nice and smooth reading for kids and adults. 

There is one small downside to these Bibles. I wasn't a fan of the the fact in the Story Book Bible, it started off Once Upon a Time...and ended with, and they lived happily ever after. I wasn't a big fan of that, because, having read the Bible and knowing where we live, it isn't a happily ever after, till heaven. I was glad though, on my copy of the Bibles that is stated on the front, "The Bible is not a fairy tale." I was glad about that. Aside from that, I didn't find anything wrong with these books. 

Too Read
4 out of 5


Thank you to FlyBy Promotions and Zonderkidz, I received a copy of these books for free in exchange for an honest review.

 

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Waiting On Wednesday: Bread of Angels

Waiting On Wednesday is hosted by Breaking the Spine. 
Each week offers the opportunity to spotlight an up and coming release you are most excited about. 

Waiting On:
Title: Bread of Angels
Author: Tessa Afshar
Publisher: Tyndale House
Publication Date: June 6th, 2017

Synopsis:
From GoodReads
Purple. The foundation of an influential trade in a Roman world dominated by men. One woman rises up to take the reins of success in an incredible journey of courage, grit, and friendship. And along the way, she changes the world.

But before she was Lydia, the seller of purple, she was simply a merchant's daughter who loved three things: her father, her ancestral home, and making dye. Then unbearable betrayal robs her of nearly everything.

With only her father's secret formulas left, Lydia flees to Philippi and struggles to establish her business on her own. Determination and serendipitous acquaintances--along with her father's precious dye--help her become one of the city's preeminent merchants. But fear lingers in every shadow, until Lydia meets the apostle Paul and hears his message of hope, becoming his first European convert. Still, Lydia can't outrun her secrets forever, and when past and present collide, she must either stand firm and trust in her fledgling faith or succumb to the fear that has ruled her life.
Why I'm Waiting:
I have loved the previous books by Tessa Afshar. Her writing is so poetic. She is able to write a realistic story that draws you in and hold on to you till the end. Her details for the story shine through out and I can not wait to see how this story of Lydia unfolds.

What are you waiting on this week?


Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Top Ten Tuesday: Fandom Favorites

Top Ten Tuesday is hosted by The Broke and the Bookish. 
Each week features a book related topic that offers the opportunity to spotlight your Top Ten. 

Topic:
Fandom Freebie
My Fandom Favorites

I have a few. Some book related, some TV related. But all are fun!!




 1. Sherlock
2. Dr. Who
3. Marvel
4.  Harry Potter
5. Disney
6. Game of Thrones
7. Outlander


What are your favorite fandoms?
I love when these new episodes and movies come out. Which things can you not wait on?