Friday, January 31, 2014

"My Time with Grandma Bible Storybrook" by Phil A. Smouse

Do you have grandchildren, or grand/neices or nephews? There is a special bond between grands and their grandparents, and this book celebrates that bond. So, if you have grandchildren, or hope to in the future, come check out what is inside. 

The Bible can be confusing to little minds, and children look to adults to make things easy to understand. Grandmothers have a great opportunity to help children love and learn from the Bible during their special reading time. This book breaks down each story into easy to understand language, gives a special "Love Note from Grandma," and a special "Love Note from God." So, along with the fun of reading with Grandman and looking at the wonderful illustrations, children will see that they are special to God. Stories include: Creation, Noah, and Nicodemus.

I love this book! Storytime was always a special time for me and my children, and as the grands come along, this book will make a great addition to their time. I plan to purchase and give copies to grandmothers I know. This book will make a great addition to any home with children, because grandparents are everywhere. I received my complimentary copy of this book from the Tyndale Publicity Group in exchange for an honest review.

Monday, January 27, 2014

"Shadowed by Grace" by Cara Putman

Inspired by "Monuments Men" by Robert Edsel, "Shadowed by Grace" takes the reader back to the years of WW II. Rachel Justice is a young woman caught between photographing the devastation of the war, looking for the biological father she never knew, and the possibility of love. Will she be able to accomplish her goals in any of those areas?

Rachel's mothers life is being taken by TB. This only instills a sharper longing to find and connect with, the man who fathered her. She has a sketchbook that belonged to him and knows he was from Italy. As an artist, he may have money to help save her mother's life. But there is also a war raging and Rachel has to find a way to travel to Italy. She uses her job as a photojournalist to get to Italy and hopefully locate him. Then, she meets Scott, a man working to save the Italian monuments from the destruction of war, and some things change. Will Scott be able to protect the monuments and Rachel? Will love spark between them? Will Rachel find her biological father and get the help her mother so desperately needs? All of these questions and much more will be answered as you travel the pages of this book.

This is a wonderful book filled with rich characters, scenery, and story. I hadn't really paid much attention to the work of the Monuments Men, but this book has kindled a desire to learn more about them. I enjoyed the strong female character, Rachel, and watching her deal with the struggles that came her way. If you enjoy books based on historical events with a love story and other twists and turns thrown in, this book is for you! I can't read more by Cara Putman. I received my review copy from Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for participation in the blog tour.
Book Info

About the book: She found peace in a time of war.

Desperate to save her dying mother, an American woman accepts her newspaper's assignment to travel to Italy where she takes photographs dangerously close to the front lines during World War II. But Rachel's real motive in this journey is to find the father she never knew, an artist she hopes can offer the comfort and support both she and her mother need to survive at such a desperate time.

In her quest, Rachel becomes involved with what will become the Monuments Men effort to save great monuments and works of art from the Third Reich. Soon enough she will find more than she ever imagined---in war, in love, and in God.

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About the author: Cara C. Putman graduated high school at 16, college at 20, and completed her law degree at 27. The best-selling author of more than a dozen books, Cara is active in women's ministry at her church, teaches graduate courses at Purdue University, practices law, and is a homeschooling mom. She lives with her husband and 4 children in Indiana.

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Wednesday, January 22, 2014

"The Peach Keeper" by Sarah Addison Allen

"Willa said happiness means taking risks. And if you're not a little scared, you're not doing it right." pg. 249

Walls of Water is a town filled with secrets. No one wants to talk about them, but they are hanging on the fringes of everything. There is a gala coming, a gala to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the founding of the Walls of Water Women's Society Club. So much will happen before then.....

Willa grew up in Walls of Water, left for a time, and came back. She's not rich, but her coffee shop is popular and she seems happy. Then Colin comes back into her life and the roller coaster begins. Meanwhile, Paxton and Sebastion are dealing with their own set of problems. Secrets have each of them hiding parts of themselves, unsure of how anyone else will react. When a body is discovered at the Madam, the site of the gala, the mystery of the man, his death, and who/what killed him becomes the topic on everyone's mind. The story actually has them working together. Who was Tucker Devlin and what did he have to do with peaches? Will the mystery of his death be solved so that the gala can happen at the Madam? Will love conquer all, or will secrets continue to keep these people apart? 

I loved this book! The characters, "ghosts," strange smells and sounds, and the location all blended to make a very likeable read. I hated to see it end. It is hard not to write too much, but if you like books that have a little magic, a bit of history, a bit of love, and a lot of turmoil, you will love this book. I recommend any of Sarah Addison Allen's books and can't wait to read something new by her.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

"The Headmistress of Rosemere" by Sarah E. Ladd

Running her father's boarding school was something Patience Creighton never thought she would do. But, after his death, the rest of the family "checked out," leaving her to make it work. Can Patience rally the staff and students to save the school? What will happen when she finds out that her family doesn't own the school or the land; that it is leased? 

Patience loved her family, but after her father died, her brother took off and her mother became deeply depressed. Rosemere needs a leader and Patience is determined to make things work. Until she discovers that the land if truly owned by a man named William Sterling. A gambler with more debt than money, Sterling is an unsure bet for the future. But, there is something about him and his desire to keep the land that encourages Patience. Will they work things out so that the school and students can stay? Is there a romance brewing? Come to Rosemere and meet the students, staff, Patience, and William. You will enjoy the meeting.

What a wonderful book! Sarah Ladd's writing reminds me of authors like Julie Klaussen. The characters and story line are realistic and inviting. The book will get your attention from the beginning and you will be sorry to see it end. If you enjoy historical romances, you will love this new book by Sarah Ladd. I received my review copy from Litfuse Publicity Group in exchange for an honest review.
Book Info
About the book: Patience Creighton has dedicated herself to the Rosemere School for Young Ladies. But the return of the enigmatic master of the estate puts everything she loves at risk.

Bright, sensible Patience knows what is expected of her. At twenty-five, her opportunity for a family of her own has passed, so she invests herself in teaching at her father's school for girls. When her father dies suddenly and her brother moves away to London, she is determined to make the school successful.

Confirmed bachelor William Sterling also knows what is expected of him, but mistake after mistake has left him teetering on ruin's edge. As master of Eastmore Hall he owns a great deal of property --- including the land where Rosemere School is located --- but possesses little money to manage its upkeep. When debtors start calling, he is desperate to find a new source of income, even if it means sacrificing Rosemere.

When a fire threatens the school grounds, William must decide to what lengths he is willing to go to protect his birthright. And when Patience's brother returns with a new wife to take over management of the school, Patience suddenly finds herself unsure of her calling. After a surprising truth about William's past is brought to light, both William and Patience will have to seek God's plans for their lives-and their hearts.

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About the author: Sarah E. Ladd has more than ten years of marketing experience. She is a graduate of Ball State University and holds degrees in public relations and marketing. The Heiress of Winterwood was the recipient of the 2011 Genesis Award for historical romance. Sarah lives in Indiana with her amazing husband, sweet daughter, and spunky Golden Retriever.

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Sunday, January 19, 2014

"Neverwhere" by Neil Gaiman

Richard Mayhew was an ordinary man with a job, apartment, and girlfriend. That all changed the day he met "Door." With is world turned upside down, will Richard ever find a way to return to his simple life in London and people he has known?

Hidden under London is a teaming society of people. They are the unknown, the unseen, the forgotten. Yet, they live. Some speak to rats, others provide protection, others just survive. Richard knew nothing of this situation until he met Door and helped her. Little did he know, he had thwarted the assassins who were sent to kill her. Door is on a mission to find those who killed her family and stay alive in the process. Richard must find her to uncover the reason for his sudden disappearance from the world above. Will Richard be able to regain his life? Will Door find those who massacred her family? Will Richard and Door work togther and form an unbreakable bond? Come meet the characters who inhabit "Neverwhere," the good and the evil, and see what becomes of Door.

I really enjoyed this book and recommend it to anyone who loves fantasy, mystery, and suspense. You won't be sorry you picked it up!