Sunday, October 28, 2012

"Tangled Ashes" by Michele Phoenix

Lamorlaye, France and a castle combine to test the skills of architect Marshall Becker. He doesn't want to go, but is forced to by those who care. Once in France, he finds that not only are the people interesting, but the story of the castle (Meunier mansion) is as well. Can Marshall muster the desire necessary to complete the project, or will someone get in the way?

Marshall needs a break from his normal work, so he is sent to France to complete a massive renovation. Little did he know in the beginning that there is no where enough time to complete it, nor did he understand the type of people involved. The new owner wants things ready for his wife's birthday, which seems impossible, but Marshall is willing to do what he can. Then he meets the owner's children and their nanny, and even a "squatter." Each person he meets has a story and a secret, but will Marshall take the time to unravel them all? The castle also has a story, one that just fifty years before was one of Nazi occupation and "master race" design. It is a story that is almost forgotten. What will Marshall learn? Is there any danger involved in the investigations he launches? Can Marshall find the calm he needs to rid himself of the secrets that haunt him? Throughout the story, the pieces of the puzzle fit together for an ending that you might not see coming.

I love stories that make me think and follow the author as they tell a story. This one is crafted with the keeping the reader reading and guessing, and definitely lives up to its title. Ms. Phoenix uses two distinct time frames to tell her story, leaving readers satisfied that she completes it. I found the story well written and fun to try to figure out, and the characters realistic and interesting. This is the first book I have read by Ms. Phoenix, but I definitely want to read more! I received my free review copy from Handlebar Publishing for an honest review.As

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

"The Secret Keeper" by Kate Morton

What is the cost of keeping a secret? How much does it affect your life? Laurel Nicholson is sixteen years old and enjoying life, when she sees her mother surprised by a visitor. Laurel is the witness to something so shocking that she buries it for fifty years. But....

This is the story of three young people who meet before WWII and find themselves totally connected forever. Their lives may have seemed separate later in life, but one of them has to tell the story. That one is Laurel's mother Dorothy. Laurel had put that awful day behind her and had become an actress. But her mother was turning ninety, so she went home for a visit and found it was time to ask the questions she had buried for so long. As Dorothy tells her story, she introduces Vivien and Jimmy. The reader is treated to new facts through the use of flashbacks, and is transported through time from before WWII through the 60's and to the present. Will Dorothy tell the whole story? Will Laurel accept or reject what her mother has to say? The story will keep readers enthralled as they travel through time unraveling mysteries and deceptions, finding friendship and passion.

I love Kate Morton's writing and have since she wrote "The House At Riverton" in 2006. Her stories and characters pull me in quickly and I am transported through time with their memories. Readers of all types will enjoy Ms. Morton's books, and I for one can't wait for the next one. There are many lively topics that reading groups will enjoy discussing. I received my free review copy from Atria Books through Net Galley.

"Borders of the Heart" by Chris Fabry

Borders are everywhere, some made by society, some by ourselves. What happens when the borders someone has placed around his heart are challenged? What about the borders between countries? A great story happens!

J.D. Jessup is running. He wants to distance himself from his past, and that distancing takes him to Arizona. He is hired to work on an organic farm, and the owner lets him know that this is an area for illegals to cross into America. He is told to call the police if he sees anyone. It makes sense to J.D. until finds Maria near death. He can't turn her in. He needs to help her. Little does he know that that is an extremely dangerous choice for both himself and for Maria because Maria is also running. The difference here is that the man Maria is running from is out to kill them. As the two of them run, J.D. finds strength that can only come from trusting God.  Do they escape, or do both J.D. and Maria have to face their pasts? What about the man chasing them? Pick up the book and ride along to find out!

What an interesting story! I loved the characters and felt for them. I was on the run with them. It made me think about what I would do if I were in J.D.'s place and how things would end up. Chris Fabry has a style that will draw you into the story and characters, and not let you go until the end. I recommend it to lovers of suspense and trust. Book groups will have a great time discussing the topics presented. I received my review copy from Tyndale House Publishers for participation in the blog tour.

Win an iPad from Joanna Weaver and RSVP to her Live Webcast Event {11/8}

Celebrate the release of At the Feet of Jesus with Joanna Weaver by entering to win an iPad and RSVPing for the "True Life" Webcast Event on 11/8!

One blessed winner will receive:

  • An iPad

  • The Year in Bethany Trilogy (Having a Mary Heart in a Martha World, Having a Mary Spirit and Lazarus Awakening 

  • At the Feet of Jesus for YOU and Five of your friends.

Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on November 7th. Winner will be announced at the "True Life" Live Webcast Event on November 8th. Connect with author Joanna Weaver and her special guest for an evening of encouragement, laughter and a Q&A! There will also be gift certificates and books given away to participants.

So grab your copy of At the Feet of Jesus (or one of Joanna's other books) and join Joanna on evening of November 8th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the books - don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun, RSVP todayTell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 8th!

Thursday, October 18, 2012

"You Don't Know Me" by Susan May Warren

Trust. Annalis Decker needs a huge helping of trust, but will her fear keep her from telling her family the truth? Will she be able to protect herself and her family from a dangerous criminal or will she run?

Annalis Decker is happy and loves the life she has made with her family. As an involved wife and mother, she thinks her life is perfect. But, burying your past, even for good reasons, can come back to haunt you. Annalis had another complete life as Diedre O'Reilly. That life was destroyed when she got into trouble and ended up testifying against a dangerous man. He went to prison and Diedre became Annalis and entered a witness protection program. She never told anyone, including her husband Nathan. Imagine her surprise and fear when Agent Frank Harrison contacts her to tell her that the man she put in prison is getting out and he wants revenge. What will she do now? Her fear is overwhelming, especially for her family. Her husband is running for mayor. What will happen if people know the truth? Can she keep her children safe? Is there anyone she can trust? Come and visit Deep Haven to uncover the truth and the outcome of this story.

I loved this book. Susan May Warren has a way of drawing readers into her stories and holding their attention until the end. The characters and story line captivated me, and I wanted more. I recommend this book to anyone who loves suspense, and think book groups will enjoy discussing the many faces of this story. I received my free review copy from the Litfuse Publishing Company for participation in the blog tour. It has been a pleasure!

About the Book: 

A Deep Haven Novel

Sometimes the secrets we keep to protect ourselves can be our undoing.

To all who know her, Annalise Decker is a model wife and mother. She’s a permanent member of the PTA, never misses a sporting event, and is constantly campaigning for her husband’s mayoral race.

No one knows that Annalise was once Deidre O’Reilly, a troubled young woman whose testimony put a dangerous criminal behind bars. Relocated through the Witness Security Program to the quaint harbor town of Deep Haven, Deidre received a new identity and a fresh start, which began when she fell in love with local real estate agent Nathan Decker.

Twenty years later, Annalise couldn’t be more unprepared for her past to catch up with her. When Agent Frank Harrison arrives with news that the man she testified against is out on parole and out for revenge, Annalise is forced to face the consequences of her secrets. Will she run again, or will she finally find the courage to trust those she loves most with both her past and her future?

Meet Susan: 

Susan May Warren is the RITA award-winning novelist of over thirty novels. A five-time Christy award finalist, a two-time RITA Finalist, she’s also a multi-winner of the Inspirational Readers Choice award, and the ACFW Carol Award.

A seasoned women’s events speaker, she’s a popular writing teacher at conferences around the nation and the author of the beginning writer’s workbook: From the Inside-Out: discover, create and publish the novel in you!.

Find out more about Susan May at

Blog Tour Schedule

Monday, October 15, 2012

"At the Feet of Jesus" by Joanna Weaver

The complete title of this new book by Joanna Weaver is, "At the Feet of Jesus - Daily Devotions to Nurture a Mary Heart." There is a devotional, Scripture passage, and reflection for each day, helping the reader begin each morning drawing closer to Christ. Joanna Weaver has made it a point in her books to encourage women to come to Bible study and prayer with the express intention of spending time at the feet of Jesus. This time is some of the most precious we can enjoy. 

Along with the daily devotional, Joanna Weaver has added some extras. The "Going Deeper" sections are concise discussions that impact our daily lives. Topics include: "Praying God's Word," "Memorizing Scripture," and "Getting More from your Bible Study." Each is meant to target a specific aspect of our Christian walk and draw us closer to Christ. At the end of the book, you will find a "One-Year Reading Plan" and a "Notes" section. 

I have really enjoyed the time I have spent reading this devotional, and plan to use it and the Bible reading plan she includes for the year 2013. It is always nice for me to have a new devotional for the new year to go with my daily Bible reading goals.Reading through the Bible every year isn't difficult, you just need a plan. You will find one here! I recommend this devotional to all Christian women who want to draw closer to Christ, to learn at His feet as Mary did. It will change all of our lives. I received my free review copy from Litfuse Publicity for participation in the blog tour.

 Book Info
About At the Feet of Jesus: 

You were made for more than serving God; you were made to know Him.

Intimacy with God-to know Him and be known by Him. It is what our hearts desperately need, but somehow life conspires to keep us busy and distracted.

For anyone who struggles when it comes to daily devotions, At the Feet of Jesusextends an irresistible invitation to set aside your duties and find the amazing peace and incredible joy that come from time alone with Him. Drawn from Joanna Weaver's beloved Bethany trilogy, each reading in this 365-day devotional includes a Bible reading passage and reflection question. All-new material and "Going Deeper" sidebars are also woven throughout.

Discover for yourself the riches that come from spending a portion of each day alone with God. At the feet of Jesus-where true life begins!

Includes a unique One-Year Bible Reading Guide.

Link to buy the book:
Meet Joanna:

Joanna Weaver is known the world over for her transparent and life-changing books, Having A Mary Heart in a Martha World and Having a Mary Spirit. Joanna has appeared on a wide variety of nationally syndicated radio and television broadcasts. She is also a highly sought after speaker and shares her message at intimate gatherings and several high profile events each year. But Joanna's greatest joy is found in being a wife and mother and her role as a pastor's wife.

Find out more about Joanna at

 Blog Tour Schedule

Sunday, October 7, 2012

"God of All Creation" by James Robison

What can we learn from our pets and other animals that come into our lives? In this new book, James Robison takes life lessons from the things we may not really pay attention to when we are with our pets, and shows how we can easily adapt them to our lives. 

A miniature dachshund named "Princess" has brought so much joy into the lives of the Robisons. But she has also brought spiritual reminders that we can all learn from. We all know that dogs are loyal, protective, and lovable, but, they also teach us lessons on things like persistence, obedience, purpose, thankfulness, and making the most of the time we have. One of the stories in the book deals with Princess getting a "sticker" in her paw. Many dogs wouldn't want to have anyone touch it, but Princess trusted James and not only let him remove the main sticker, but also a thorn that was left. We can apply this to our Christian lives by totally trusting God to take care of us and completely remove the "stickers" when they come along. He is so faithful to us! Another area of our lives that sometimes needs reinforcement is boundaries. Why are they important and what harm can there be from pushing them? Read the story of "Hershey" and you will discover the way those choices affect everyone. There are many other devotional type stories in the book to read and enjoy while reinforcing basic principles of our lives.

I really enjoyed this book (and will keep it handy for continued encouragement) and am recommending it to my friends. It is encouraging and full of teaching moments, but all is done in an easy to understand manner. We have a dog that is part dachshund that has brought great joy to our lives. But, I also am now finding myself paying more attention to the things he does to see if God is trying to tell me something. Pick up this book and enjoy the stories. You may find some life changing truths. I received my free review copy from the Blogging For Books Program in exchange for an honest review. 

Saturday, October 6, 2012

"The River" by Michael Neale

Haunting memories surround "The River" for Gabriel Clark. Burying the memories has been his goal, something he really can't deal with. But, what happens when he has a job that removes any comfort from his world and forces him to deal with the past? Will he finally find peace? Can he rebuild his life?

When Gabriel was only five, he witnessed the death of his father while trying to rescue a kayaker on the river. His life from that moment is controlled by the trauma and anguish over that event. He can't bear to go anywhere near the river, choosing rather to stay far away and bury his pain. As an adult, his life takes many turns until one day he takes a job working for a company that offers river guides. Gabriel comes face to face with the past and is confronted with his own inability to move forward in his life. There are people who help him along the way - like Tabitha and Elias - but ultimately, Gabriel must be the one to choose forward movement in his life. Will he choose to deal with the past and finally move forward, or will the past retain its strong hold over him? Is this applicable to our own lives today? Pick up the book and find out!

This is a great story, one that can help each of us put away the past and move forward. The characters and story are compelling, making it difficult to put down. I recommend this book to readers of all types, and definitely think book groups will find this a valuable book to discuss. It will also make a great gift for someone having trouble moving forward in their life. I received my free review copy from the Book Sneeze program in exchange for an honest review.