Thursday, February 28, 2013

"Science and God" by Scott Perry

According to many, God and Science can't possibly work together. "They" say that these two are diametrically opposed to each other. But, in this small book written for teens, Scott Perry shows how they work together.

Teenagers, as well as many adults, struggle with things they are taught in school, home, and church. It is hard, sometimes, to know how to answer someone who wants to talk about evolution or other scientific topics if you don't know what you believe. The "Little Black Books" series gives those aged 14 - 40 food for thought; answers to the tough questions. Mr. Perry approaches each topic thoughtfully and with his age group in mind. Is evolution a theory as many think, or is it something more? Can you have an answer or participate in a logical discussion about scientific ideas that relate to God? This book may help you do just that.

This book was interesting. I think it will help those in his target age group to be prepared for conversations around them. Does it answer everything? No, but it encourages thoughtful research. I encourage teenagers to pick up this, and the other books in the series. The size is not overwhelming, and the information is well presented.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

"A Woman's Guide to Reading the Bible in a Year" by Diane Stortz

Reading and understanding the Bible is an achievable goal for everyone. In her new book, Diane Stortz gives wonderful tips and tools for "a life-changing journey into the heart of God.

Reading the Bible doesn't take a lot of time each day, but to get to the meat of the message, some thoughtful study is needed. This book is broken into 52 weekly lessons around topics like: "Chosen by God," and "Back to Egypt," with Bible passages to read, a thought to meditate on, and some "Checkpoints."  At the end of the book are timelines, resources, references, and a through the year guide to reading the Bible. Following her plan, you can read through the Bible and gain knowledge and power from that reading.

This book looks at reading the Bible in a year through a new lens for me. The weekly chapters give so much to think about and meditate on. It hits topics differently from daily devotionals and "Through the Bible in a Year" programs. They all work, so I encourage you to find the one that works best for you. Take your personal Bible reading and study to that next level. I received my free review copy from Bethany House in exchange for an honest review.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

"Bathsheba: Bathed in Grace" by Carol Cook

Women of the Bible can seem so old fashioned and out of place in today's world. But what if you got a closer glimpse into their lives? Could you learn something that would change your focus and your life? In her new book, Carol Cook steps into the lives of eight women of the Bible to let us see just how they apply to us today.

Bathsheba, Leah, Rebekah, Eve, Tamar, Sarah, Hagar, and Rachel - eight women with dreams and hopes for the future, each making decisions that would change her life forever. But, were the decisions good or bad? In the case of Eve, it was obviously bad, but how did she feel about it? Bathsheba was called by the king and you didn't say no to the king, right? Tamar had been promised a husband who didn't come and resorted to deceit and trickery to make a point. Do you judge her harshly? We all make choices everyday and making the right ones can be tricky sometimes. Take a few moments to read these stories. See the world and options these women faced through their eyes. Learn to look beyond the obvious and dig deeper.

I really enjoyed this book and will read it again. The stories made these women even more real to me, some touched me and brought tears to my eyes. Books like this are made to be shared and discussed. I recommend it to women everywhere and think groups will truly enjoy the discussions that come from these pages. This is a book I will purchase for gifting. I received my free review copy from the Book Sneeze program in exchange for an honest review. 

Monday, February 18, 2013

"Fear, Faith, and a Fistful of Chocolate" by Debora Coty

Fear can get the best of us anytime we take our eyes off the goal. It comes in many forms and for many reasons (finances, health, family life, etc.). But, in her new book, Debora Coty shows how fun can help take away the worry.

Worry and fear are two of the worst happiness wreckers. They can rob us of our joy in living and in our enjoyment of those around us. Debora Coty wrote her book with busy people in mind. First, she created a book that has an interesting title, filled it with fun paper, then covered the paper with wonderful tidbits of wisdom. Once picked up, the book beckons the reader to spend some time within its pages, letting go of worry and fear, and learning how to really let it go.

This is a wonderful book! It is fun and the chapters didn't take long to read. But, the message came through loud and clear - let go of the fear and have faith. Her practical suggestion and ideas will work for you too, if you pick up the book. I think it is good not only for individuals, but groups will have some wonderful discussions here. I received my free review copy in exchange for participation in the blog tour.
 Book Info 
About Fear, Faith, and a Fistful of Chocolate
Are you ready to strip fear's power over you and become the confident woman you were meant to be? Have you found that tolerating your personal fear monsters only makes them growl louder?
Okay, sister - take my hand and let's boldly step up and yank the masks off those shadow-lurking, anxiety-churning, worry-generating beasts.
With her own brand of off-beat wit and wisdom, inspirational humorist Debora Coty addresses heart needs of women worn down by everyday fears - financial, health, relationships, loss, pain, the unknown, the what ifs ...
With fresh spiritual insight, Debora shares hope, true life stories, scriptural lifelines, and a few LOL's along with simple, practical tips for sidestepping fear with faith. And a fistful of chocolate! 
Link to buy the book:      
Meet Debora:  
Debora Coty is an occupational therapist, a piano teacher, and a freelance writer. She's also involved in the children's ministry at her church and is an avid tennis player. Debora began writing to fill the void when her last child left for college, and it has since become a passion. Debora has a real knack for getting across sound biblical concepts with a refreshing lightheartedness as attested in her monthly newspaper column entitled "Grace Notes: God's Grace for Everyday Living." 
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 Blog Tour Schedule

Thursday, February 14, 2013

"Renee of France" by Simonetta Carr

"Renee of France" combines subjects like the Protestant Reformation, John Calvin, and Italian society with Renee, a woman who supported Calvin but was married to a man who served the Pope. Renee wants to be strong, but will the balance she must strike work?

Renee lived in 16th century Italy. Her life was structured and ordered by not only her nobility, but also her husband's occupation. The Duke of Ferrara served the Pope, and would not tolerate any talk of the Protestant Reformation. But, Renee believed in the principles held by John Calvin, and corresponded with him. She had many questions to ask. Her desire to help others who also struggled led her to open her home as a place of refuge and strength. The teaching done there led to the founding of a college. Renee provided inspiration for those she helped then, and continues to inspire readers today.

I like the idea of "Bitesize Biographies" because their size not only entices the reader, but the information included packs a quick punch. I found myself admiring Renee and wishing I could have met her. The road she chose wasn't easy, but she persevered and is an example to all. I recommend this book to anyone who wants to learn some history and strengthen their faith. I received my free review copy in exchange for participation in the blog tour.

Monday, February 11, 2013

"Revelation: Discovering Life for Today and Eternity" by Sue Edwards

"Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein; for the time is at hand." Revelation 1:3, KJV

Revelation, a book of prophecy and promise. In her new Bible study, Sue Edwards takes us for a closer look into its relevance to our lives "today and for eternity."

Revelation is basically split into three parts. Part 1 is the letters to the churches, Part 2 deals the judgments on those left after the rapture, and Part 3 deals with the new heaven and new earth. This study deals primarily with Parts 1 and 3, because those are the parts that deal with Christians - how we should and will live. Each lesson has a chapter in the book with Scripture to read and memorize, historical context, thought provoking questions, and so much more. But that's not all.!revelation/cqri   This link leads to the on line lessons with Sue herself, and a free leader's guide. Revelation, a book of prophecy becomes so much clearer as we study together, and learn how to apply God's message to our lives today.

This is a wonderful study! My husband and I are doing this together, enjoying not only the work from the book, but Sue's lessons on line. This study will be great for individuals, couples, and small groups. Thank you to Litfuse Publicity who provided my free copy in exchange for participation in the blog tour.
 Book Info
About Discover Together Bible Study: 
Women need Bible study to keep balanced, focused and Christ-centered in their busy worlds. However, many find it difficult to set aside the time and discipline needed for an in-depth study. The Discover Together studies offer tiered questions to allow readers to choose a depth of study that fits with their individual lifestyles or schedules, even if they vary by the week, month or season

This insightful Bible study uses the example of Paul's church in Ephesus to show readers how they can be victorious Christians, living in God's Word, and free from sin. Part of the discovery series, the Ephesians edition includes tips for either individual or group use, inspirational sidebars and short, 3-5 minute teaching videos. Scan the video QR code in the book with a smart phone or visit the series website to watch Sue provide historical and cultural background, teach important truths found in each week's lesson, or ask thoughtful questions to encourage deeper discussion.
Link to buy the book:

Join the online Bible study here. Just LIKE the page and then follow along. There will be a launch party for Ephesians on April 11th and the online Bible study will begin the following week on April 15th.

Women crave Bible studies that challenge them to grow in their faith. But after balancing carpools, sports schedules, or work deadlines, you may not be able to commit to another evening out of the house. Now you don't have to.

Whether studying with a small group or by yourself, you know can join popular Bible teacher Sue Edwards on the Year of Discovery. Sue will be leading women through her studies with online chats and discussions on her Facebook page. All year long. Every week. Any time of day. From the comfort of home. Make-up and hair-do optional. Come as you are!
Each week you will find quotes, links to articles and other resources, and videos to help you as you study. Complete the lessons at your convenience. Then any time of day to comment or ask questions. Sue will be there frequently to respond, encourage, and equip!
Meet Sue:  
Sue Edwards (MA, Dallas Theological Seminary; D.Min., Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary) teaches full-time in the Christian Education Department at Dallas Theological Seminary. She has more than twenty-five years of experience teaching, pastoring, and directing women's ministries. In addition, Sue speaks at retreats, conferences, and seminars across the country. She is the coauthor of Women's Retreats and New Doors in Ministry to Women, and the author of the new Sue Edwards Inductive Bible Study series.
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 Blog Tour Schedule

Sunday, February 10, 2013

"Clouds" by Robin Jones Gunn

Choices have consequences. Shelly Graham is finding it harder and harder to deal with the results of her choices.

Shelly wanted to be a flight attendant and did so for five years. When she made her choice to leave, she hurt the person she loved very deeply, burying her feelings at the same time. Now she is coming home to a house that should be filled with love and life, but she finds no one to share it with. Then, she unexpectedly runs into Jonathon in Germany. It is difficult for her to handle the news that Jonathon is now engaged to someone else, but she works hard to keep that from him. She feels alone and empty confronting emotions she didn't know ran so deep. What can she do to bury the pain she feels now? How could she not have realized how much she cared about him? Will she be able to talk to Jonathon about the consequences of her earlier choices?

"Clouds" is a book that will pull you into its pages through good writing, realistic characters, and a story line that will make you wonder how it will end. I really enjoyed it and will be going back to read the other four books in the series. I recommend it to readers who love a good story. I received my free review copy from the Blogging for Books program in exchange for an honest review.

"A Hero's Throne" by Ross Lawhead

Book Two of the "Ancient Earth Trilogy" by Ross Lawhead is here!

Daniel Tully and Freya Reynolds are back, again trying to save their world from destruction by evil forces. Eight years has passed since their first adventure, and while they are older and a little more experienced, there has been some miscommunication leading to distrust between them. Combine that with the dark forces threatening to destroy their world and they need some help. So, they join forces with an ancient knight and a Scottish police officer in the race against the clock. Will they be able to work together to awaken the sleeping knights and get the surviving citizens to help them fight before it is too late? What will happen to the ancient land of Nidergeard?

Ross Lawhead has captured my interest with the first two installations in his trilogy, and I can't wait for the third to come out! This is a great YA fantasy series that can be enjoyed by people of all ages. Action and adventure await any reader who opens this book. I received my free review copy from Book Sneeze in exchange for an honest review.