Tuesday, April 15, 2014

"Mom Seeks God" by Julia Roller

Mothers are so busy all the time. There are children to care for, a house to clean, food to cook, and on and on it goes. While it is a rewarding life, time with God can come up short. How can you find time to communicate with Him through His Word and prayer while juggling everything else? 

Julia Roller is a mother who found herself trying to find a way to do it all, yet feeling there had to be a better way. This book details her year-long journey to find and build a closer relationship with God. She shares her wisdom and knowledge while letting mothers know it is possible to have a rich and full life. The ten disciplines she studied are: prayer, fellowship, submission, study, simplicity, silence, worship, fasting, service, and celebration. Each is an essential part of a Christian walk, and each is a vibrant part of the Christian life. Through the pages of the book, mothers can find a way to regain a close walk with God by truly seeking Him. 

This is a powerful book about paying attention to our spiritual walk and our relationship with God. I found a great deal of information applicable to my life even though my children are no longer small. If you, or someone you know, are struggling with making it all "happen," this book would be a great place to start. I also think it would make a wonderful study for new/young mothers' groups. I received my review copy from Litfuse in exchange for participation in the blog tour.


Author: Julia Roller
Mom Seeks God by Julia Roller offers a highly relatable story and useful advice to help new moms grow in their faith as they address life changes with grace, patience, and prayer. As readers discover ten essential faith practices, they’ll learn that motherhood itself is a spiritual discipline and can be God’s most effective technique for forming a more Christ-like life.
Julia is celebrating the book’s release with a fun giveaway and connecting with moms during a live Facebook author chat.
One winner will receive:
  • A Kindle HDX
  • Mom Seeks God by Julia Roller
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on May 1st. Winner will be announced at “Moms’ May Day” Facebook Party on May 1st. Connect with Julia for an encouraging discussion on spiritual discipline and finding joy in the middle of motherhood. Win prizes, connect with other moms, and be inspired.
So grab your copy of Mom Seeks God and join Julia on the evening of May 1st for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the book, don’t let that stop you from coming!)


Book info for your blog
About the book: The first months and years of motherhood can be the most challenging and disorienting of your life---and faith. When you're surrounded by the happy chaos of children, how do you spend quiet time with God if the only quiet time you get is while you sleep? How can you demonstrate a solid spiritual life to your children if you don't have time to pursue one yourself?
When Julia Roller discovered that her spiritual growth had been stunted by the busyness of life with her toddler, she embarked on a yearlong journey through ten spiritual disciplines: prayer, fellowship, submission, study, simplicity, silence, worship, fasting, service, and celebration. As she focused on each discipline, she discovered practical ways to observe them---even in the chaos of her every day.

Purchase a copy and find out more about Julia at: http://www.juliaroller.com

About the Author: Julia Roller is an author and editor. Her books include Mom Seeks God(Abingdon Press), A Year with God(with Richard J. Foster), A Year with Aslan, and 25 Books Every Christian Should Read. Working with Renovar√©, she has also co-authored four spiritual formation guides. She has written study guides for authors such as Desmond Tutu, Richard J. Foster, Henri Nouwen, Jenna Bush, and Rob Bell. Her articles have appeared in The San Francisco Chronicle, Street Spirit, Group, Rev.!, and Children's Ministry. She and her family live in San Diego, California.
 Blog tour schedule

Monday, April 7, 2014

"Maybelle in Stitches" by Joyce Magnin

A quilt, a woman who can't really sew, a military husband gone missing, and and interesting family history are all parts of this new book by Joyce Magrin. Is Maybelle right holding on to her belief that Holden will come back to her? 

Quilting was not something Maybelle thought she would do because she couldn't sew. But as she attempted to fill her time after her new husband went off to war, she went to the attic to explore. One of the things she found was an unfinished quilt and she decided it was time to try sewing. As her lonely nights stretched on, Maybelle found comfort in not only the quilting, but also in the story her family through the quilt. There were many things she didn't know. Will Maybelle hear anything good about Holden? Will the quilt remain the activity that keeps her sane? Come and learn more about Maybelle, Holden, and the family quilt.

Another wonderful book in the "Quilts of Love" series! I enjoyed the characters and story line, and I was constantly rooting for news about Holden. It was also fun to read about Maybelle's growth in sewing and the comfort it gave her. I have always loved quilting and these books bring the process alive. If you enjoy books that have a historical setting, with compelling characters, and the process of making it through the day by day struggle we all face, this book is for you. I received my review copy from Litfuse in exchange for participation in the blog tour.
Book Info

About Quilts of Love: Quilts tell stories of love and loss, hope and faith, tradition and new beginnings. TheQuilts of Love series focuses on the women who quilted all of these things into their family histories. A new book releases each month and features contemporary and historical romances as well as women's fiction and the occasional light mystery. You will be drawn into the endearing characters of this series and be touched by their stories.

About the book: Maybelle Kazinzki can't sew. She was after all, the only girl in the seventh grade Home Economics class to sew the zipper in the neck hole of the A-Line dress they were supposed to make. But when she finds an unfinished quilt in the attic of her mother's house she gets the crazy idea to finish it---somehow, come heck or high water. She thinks it will help fill the lonely nights while her husband, Holden, is serving overseas during World War II.

Her recently departed mother's quilt is made from scraps of material Maybelle traces back to her mother's childhood, her grandmother's childhood and her own childhood. She tries to add one of Holden's stripes to it but the sewing is not going well and neither is her life. After receiving some harsh news, Maybelle's faith falters and she puts the quilt away and stops trusting God. But God is faithful---no matter what. And it'll take a group of neighborhood women armed with quilting needles to help Maybelle believe that.

Learn more about this book and the series at the Quilts of Love website.

About the Author: Joyce Magnin is the author of the Bright's Pond novels, including the award-winning The Prayers of Agnes Sparrow. A member of the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writers Fellowship, Joyce is a frequent workshop leader and the organizer of the StoryCrafters fiction group. She lives near Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

Learn more about Joyce at: http://joycemagnin.blogspot.com

 Blog Tour Schedule


Saturday, April 5, 2014

"Shadow Hand" by Anne Elizabeth Stengl

In this sixth book of her "Tales of Goldstone Wood" series,  Anne E. Stengl's recounts more of the story of Lady Daylily, Lionheart, and Prince Foxbrush. Will Lady Daylily be forced to marry someone she doesn't love, or will the one she loves save the day? 

Lady Daylily is miserable as she thinks about the loss of Lionheart and her upcoming arranged marriage to Prince Foxbrush.  So, what did she do? She ran away to the Wilderlands to hide but was followed. Who followed her and who is in the Wilderlands? As the story continues, readers are treated to many interesting characters and themes (redemption, love, hope, mercy, etc.). It is truly another captivating book in the series, and the questions readers have from Book 5 will be answered!

I really enjoy Anne E. Stengl's writing style. Her characters continue to amaze me, and her story lines and settings are captivating. If you enjoy series books that are challenging yet enthralling, this series is for you. I recommend that you read the books from the beginning so that you are up on the characters, story line, and settings. I received my free review copy from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

"By Faith Isaac" by Elsa Henderson

Abraham and Isaac, father and son, begin this new book by Elsa Henderson. Isaac becomes the focus in order to discover the reason he is mentioned in the "faith hall of fame." Through the use of flashbacks, readers will see how Isaac's faith grew throughout his lifetime.

Flashback - Isaac is a child with many questions about Yahweh as the book begins. Abraham patiently and lovingly explains who God is and why He is important. Flashback - Rebecca and Isaac meet, falling in love instantly. More flashbacks show the way Isaac has grown in faith. There were many situations that had tested him, some where he succeeded and others not so well, but each brought Isaac closer to the God he loved. From his childhood, to his loving marriage to Rebecca, to his defeat of Kedorlaomer's army, and even through pretending that Rebecca was his sister and not his wife, Isaac grew in faith. His example, lovingly retold in this book, offers encouragement and light for our way. 

This is a book about faith and the wonderful things that come from that faith. Yes, there were times when Isaac wasn't as steadfast in his faith as he should have been, but God used each of those instances for good. It is a good example for Christians everywhere. This fictional retelling will delight readers of every age and will make a great discussion book for reading groups. I received my free review copy from Book Look in exchange for an honest review.

"The Queen's Handmaid" by Tracy Higley

An orphan who served in Cleopatra's palace has an extremely important package to keep safe. There are those who would like to find, and destroy, these scrolls of Daniel. As Lydia travels to Jerusalem and begins work in the house of Herod, will they find her and destroy this vital information?

Lydia was orphaned at an early age and her options were few. She was taken to Cleopatra's palace and put to work. She wanted to keep to herself, stay out of harm's way, but was befriended by Samuel and a cook in the kitchen. But, Samuel was attacked and before he died, he gave Lydia an important job. He gave her the scrolls of Daniel and instructed her to give them to a specific person in the temple of Jerusalem. How would she get there? God intervened when Herod saw her with Cleopatra's children and took her to work in his house. Now in Jerusalem, Lydia had to keep herself and the scrolls safe. Would her enemies discover her identity and the location of the scrolls? Would Lydia find the man who would take the burden from her? 

This is a really interesting historical novel. You can tell that Tracy Higley did her research because the scenes and characters are realistic. It is like taking a step back in time. This book will not only make a wonderful selection for readers of historical fiction, but I also think book clubs would enjoy discussing the intricacies of the book. I received my free review copy in exchange for honest participation in the Litfuse blog tour.  

About the Giveaway 


Author: Tracy L. Higley

The Queen’s Handmaid is the latest from author Tracy L. Higley. CBA Retailers gave it this glowing review: “Rich in historic detail, Higley’s vivid writing brings to life the plots and intrigues that swirled through the ancient world as alliances were built and broken on the calculated schemes of power-mad monarchs.”
Tracy is celebrating the release with a fun giveaway.
  • A Kindle Fire HDX
  • The Queen’s Handmaid by Tracy L. Higley
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on April 19th. Winner will be announced April 21st on Tracy’s blog.


Book Info

About the book: From the servant halls of Cleopatra's Egyptian palace to the courts of Herod the Great, Lydia will serve two queens to see prophecy fulfilled.
Alexandria, Egypt 39 BC
Orphaned at birth, Lydia was raised as a servant in Cleopatra's palace, working hard to please while keeping everyone at arm's length. She's been rejected and left with a broken heart too many times in her short life.
But then her dying mentor entrusts her with secret writings of the prophet Daniel and charges her to deliver this vital information to those watching for the promised King of Israel. Lydia must leave the nearest thing she's had to a family and flee to Jerusalem. Once in the Holy City, she attaches herself to the newly appointed king, Herod the Great, as handmaid to Queen Mariamme.
Trapped among the scheming women of Herod's political family---his sister, his wife, and their mothers---and forced to serve in the palace to protect her treasure, Lydia must deliver the scrolls before dark forces warring against the truth destroy all hope of the coming Messiah.

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/uKKQP

About the Author: Tracy L. Higley started her first novel at age eight and has been hooked on writing ever since. She has authored many novels, includingGarden of Madness and So Shines the Night. Tracy is currently pursuing a graduate degree in Ancient History and has traveled through Greece, Turkey, Egypt, Israel, Jordan, and Italy, researching her novels and falling into adventures. 

See Tracy's travel journals and more at: tracyhigley.com

 Blog Tour Schedule

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

"The 500 Hats of the Modern Day Woman" by Joyce K. Ellis

Ladies, did you ever sit down and count the different "hats" you wear each day? Did that count make you tired and wonder how you made it through each day? Joyce K. Ellis offers practical advice and humor on how to combine your hats and make them work well together.

Life can get complicated for anyone, but a woman can especially find her life unbalanced as she tries to do everything. Being a wife, mother, career woman, etc. creates many jobs or hats for her to wear. Carpool driver, nurse, seamstress, cook, teacher, employee, friend, being a servant, and the list goes on. How can accomplish what you need to and feel good about it? Joyce Ellis talks about creating priorities with God as the center. That is what will enable any of us to accomplish the things we need to do at different stages of our lives, and do them well.

This is a great book for all women to read. I enjoyed the humor combined with practicality and Scripture, and that Joyce Ellis hits all stages of life. I don't have small children at home anymore, but as an older woman, I still have daily responsibilities to manage. This is a book I will keep handy for the times when my life seems to go in a thousand different directions and I need some reminding. This would make a great book for ladies' groups to study and discuss together. I really think it is meant to be shared. I received my review copy from Litfuse Publicity in exchange for participation in the blog tour.

Book Info

About the book: Strength for Today's Demanding Roles
In The 500 Hats of a Modern-Day Woman you'll find strength, purpose, and perspective to balance your many roles-and gain insight into the roles of women around you. With honesty, humor, and practicality, Joyce Ellis helps you see how your roles can fit together to make a difference in your world. Questions for reflection or discussion at the end of each chapter make this book suitable for book clubs and small-group Bible studies as well.

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/ujOPt 

About the Author: Joyce K. Ellis, award-winning author of more than a dozen books, speaks for women's groups and retreats across the country and internationally. She and her husband enjoy reading by lakes and rivers and oceans, and spending time with their grown children and delightful, too-quickly-growing grandchildren. They live in suburban Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Learn more about Joyce at: www.joycekellis.com

Blog Tour Schedule

Landing page: 

Friday, March 21, 2014

"The Devil Walks in Mattingly" by Billy Coffey

Philip McBride died twenty years ago, but that death has a horrifying secret. Three people know there is secret about his death that they have kept all these years. Is Philip really coming to haunt them now? Is one, or all of them, responsible for his murder? Will the riverbank in Happy Hollows give up its secrets?

Mattingly, VA is the setting of this haunting book. A young man died, supposedly a suicide, but three people have spent the last twenty years in agony over their knowledge of what happened. Each of the three feels responsible for the murder of Philip McBride. Jake is the Mattingly sheriff who should know better than to keep the information to himself. His wife, Kate, also knows the truth. Then there is Taylor who can't live with himself, the information, and other people. But something is happening, and dreams and footprints fuel their terror that Philip is coming back from the grave to get them. Is any of this real, or are they simply letting their guilt lead them? Did one, or all of them, really kill Philip? If so, who, and will they be caught? Is there any forgiveness to be found?

What a great book! This book will keep you glued to the pages until you find your answers. If you like suspense and mystery, this book is for you. I also think book groups would have some wonderful discussions around the topics (like guilt, fear, and forgiveness) presented here. I received my review copy from Litfuse Publicity in exchange for participation in the blog tour.

Book Info

About the book: For the three people tortured by their secret complicity in a young man's untimely death, redemption is what they most long for . . . and the last thing they expect to receive.
It has been twenty years since Philip McBride's body was found along the riverbank in the dark woods known as Happy Hollow. His death was ruled a suicide. But three people have carried the truth ever since---Philip didn't kill himself that day. He was murdered.
Each of the three have wilted in the shadow of their sins. Jake Barnett is Mattingly's sheriff, where he spends his days polishing the fragile shell of the man he pretends to be. His wife, Kate, has convinced herself the good she does for the poor will someday wash the blood from her hands. And high in the mountains, Taylor Hathcock lives in seclusion and fear, fueled by madness and hatred.
Yet what cannot be laid to rest is bound to rise again. Philip McBride has haunted Jake's dreams for weeks, warning that he is coming back for them all. When Taylor finds mysterious footprints leading from the Hollow, he believes his redemption has come. His actions will plunge the quiet town of Mattingly into darkness. These three will be drawn together for a final confrontation between life and death . . . Between truth and lies.

Purchase a copy: http://ow.ly/ux3hc

About the Author: Billy Coffey's critically-acclaimed books combine rural Southern charm with a vision far beyond the ordinary. He is a regular contributor to several publications, where he writes about faith and life. Billy lives with his wife and two children in Virginia's Blue Ridge Mountains. 

Learn more about Billy at: http://billycoffey.com
 Blog Tour Schedule