Saturday, September 29, 2012

River's End by Melody Carlson (Review)

Three generations of women return to their roots to discover who they are and who they are meant to be.

In the final story of the Inn at the shining waters series, Anna Larson's granddaughter, Sarah, is beginning to find her independence. But her relationship with her parents  suffers as a result, and she travels away from all that is familiar.

Although the solace of the river calls Sarah back, long-held secrets await upon her return, and three generations of family heartbreaks and disappointments converge at Shining Waters.

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star

River's End is a story about forgiveness and healing, and takes place towards the end of the 1970s. For two years Anna hasn't known whether her granddaughter, Sarah, is alive or dead, because she ran away when she was just sixteen. However, near the beginning of the book, Sarah returns home, but she is much changed. Anna learns that she has been living in a commune and fears that she may have been brain-washed.

I love the interaction between Anna and her husband - it is just SO sweet! He seems like such a nice man and I loved getting to know him more in this book.

Even though this is the third book in the series, it is written in such a way that I think it could be read without reading the other two books. I haven't read the second book yet, but I never felt lost at all while reading this book. However, if you read this book first, many of the big details that happened in the first two books would be revealed.

River's End is a wonderful conclusion to The Inn at Shining Water series and I am somewhat sad to see it end. I love how while each book in the series focuses on a different generation of Larson women, it always is from Anna's perspective. I would recommend this book and this series - they have been very enjoyable.

***I received a complimentary copy of this book to review. I was asked to give my honest opinion of the book - which I have done.***

If you found this review helpful, will you please click yes HERE. Thanks!

  • Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Abingdon Press; 3 edition (August 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 142671274X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1426712746
  • Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 0.9 inches
  • Available to purchase at: Amazon/ Barnes & Noble/ Christian Book

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Thursday, September 27, 2012

CFBA Tour: Two Destinies by Elizabeth Musser

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Two Destinies
David C. Cook (September 1, 2012)
Elizabeth Musser

Elizabeth Musser, author of acclaimed novels such as The Swan House, grew up in Georgia, but now lives in Lyon, France, where she and her husband serve as missionaries with International Teams. Look for Two Testaments, her sequel to Two Crosses, in stores now, and Two Destinies, the third book in the trilogy, set for release in Fall 2012.

A word from Elizabeth:
Recent exciting news is that, finally, the whole trilogy is going to be published in 2012. Many readers have written to me throughout the years to encourage me to keep pursuing getting Two Destinies into print. In a fun twist of fate (really the Lord's perfect timing), David C. Cook (who originally published Two Testaments) has offered me a contract for all three novels. The Secrets of the Cross Trilogy will be published in June 2012 (Two Crosses and Two Testaments) and in September, 2012, Two Destinies will be in the bookstores for the first time!

Now 1994, France faces unrest and rising poverty while neighbor
Algeria is in the midst of a blood civil war. Risléne Namani, a French
woman born to Algerian parents, converts to Christianity and falls in
love with Eric Hoffmann, a Christian, committing the unpardonable
sin in the eyes of her Muslim family. Eric must find a way to rescue
her—from a forced marriage in Algeria, or even death.

A powerful, relevant tale of social struggle, heartache, cultural conflict,
 and faith put to the ultimate test.

If you would like to read the first chapter excerpt of Two Destinies, go HERE.

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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

CFBA Tour: Still Life in Shadows by Alice Wisler

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Still Life in Shadows
River North; New Edition edition (August 1, 2012)
Alice Wisler

Alice was born in Osaka, Japan in the sixties. Her parents were Presbyterian career missionaries. As a young child, Alice loved to walk down to the local stationer's store to buy notebooks, pencils and scented erasers. In her room, she created stories. The desire to be a published famous author has never left her. Well, two out of three isn't bad. She's the author of Rain Song, How Sweet It Is, Hatteras Girl and A Wedding Invitation (all published by Bethany House).

Alice went to Eastern Mennonite University after graduating from Canadian Academy, an international high school in Kobe, Japan. She majored in social work and has worked across the U.S. in that field. She taught ESL (English as a Second Language) in Japan and at a refugee camp in the Philippines. She also studied Spanish at a language institute in San Jose, Costa Rica.

She has four children--Rachel, Daniel, Benjamin and Elizabeth. Daniel died on 2/2/97 from cancer treatments at the age of four. Since then, Alice founded Daniel's House Publications in her son's memory. This organization reaches out to others who have also lost a child to death. In 2000 and 2003, Alice compiled recipes and memories of children across the world to publish two memorial cookbooks, Slices of Sunlight and Down the Cereal Aisle.

It's been fifteen years since Gideon Miller ran away from his Amish community in Carlisle, Pennsylvania as a boy of fifteen.  Gideon arrives in the Smoky Mountains town of Twin Branches and settles in at the local auto mechanic's garage. He meets a host of interesting characters -the most recent acquaintances are Kiki, an autistic teen, and her sister Mari. Known as the "Getaway Savior" he helps other Amish boys and girls relocate to life in modern America.

One day the phone rings. On the other end is his brother Moriah calling from Florida. Of course Gideon welcomes his brother to stay with him and offers him a job. But Moriah is caught in a web which ends in his death and forces Gideon to return to the town of his youth, with his brother's body in the back of a hearse and Mari and Kiki at his side. He must face not only the community he ran away from years ago but also his own web of bitterness. Will he be able to give his anger over to God and forgive his father?

If you would like to read the first chapter excerpt of Still Life in Shadows, go HERE.

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Taming the Wind by Tracie Peterson (Review)

A young widow nursing the wounds of her past…
A cowboy with demons of his own…

Though grateful for the blessing of her daughter, Carissa Lowe has accepted that widowhood is her lot in life. Bound by fear and mistrust, she feels incapable of opening her heart again.

Tyler Atherton has never forgotten Carissa. When he discovers she’s living with her sister on a nearby ranch, his life becomes intertwined with the lovely widow’s. And Carissa’s daughter, Gloria, seems determined to wrap herself around his little finger. But while Tyler longs to provide a home and future for Carissa, he is haunted by an obligation he feels unable to fulfill.

Challenged by mounting hardships, can Carissa and Tyler preserve their fledgling love in a land as unforgiving and vibrant as the people who call it home?

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1-1/2 stars

I always enjoy Tracie Peterson's books and this one is no exception. However, there were parts of the story that were just...dull and redundant. The story has a strong Christian message and I usually enjoy that in books, but at times it just seemed too much.

Carissa has had to deal with a lot in her young life. Her husband, who before they married seemed like the perfect man (caring, thoughtful, loving, etc.), quickly changed once they were married - into an abusive man. So she has a fear of getting herself into a situation like that again.

Tyler is a man who fought for the South in the Civil War and now finds that he is no longer allowed to own his family farm. It has been taken away from him since he fought for the Confederacy and he is trying to get it back. Carissa has had a special place in his heart from the moment he met her - but at that time she was married, so he didn't act on it.

I haven't read the other two books in this series yet, but I think that the author did a fantastic job of giving just enough details from the other two books that it doesn't matter that I haven't read them yet - except that I now know some of the key points in those stories. If that is something that would bother you, I would suggest you read them in order.

***I received a complimentary copy of this book to review. I was asked to give my honest opinion of the book - which I have done.***

If you found this review helpful, will you please click yes HERE. Thanks!

  • Paperback: 336 pages
  • Publisher: Bethany House Publishers (September 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0764206176
  • ISBN-13: 978-0764206177
  • ASIN: B008B9HTI8 
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1 x 8.5 inches
  • Available to purchase at: Amazon/ Barnes & Noble/ Christian Book

 Meet Tracie:     
Tracie Peterson is the award-winning author of over eighty novels, both historical and contemporary. Her     avid research resonates in her stories, as seen in her bestselling Heirs of Montana and Alaskan Quest series. Tracie and her family make their home in Montana. Visit Tracie's Web site at and her blog at

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Monday, September 24, 2012

With Every Letter by Sarah Sundin (Review)

They know everything about each other-except their real names.

Lt. Mellie Blake is looking forward to beginning her training as a flight nurse. She is not looking forward to writing a letter to a man she's never met--even if it is anonymous and part of a morale-building program. Lt. Tom MacGilliver, an officer stationed in North Africa, welcomes the idea of an anonymous correspondence--he's been trying to escape his infamous name for years.

As their letters crisscross the Atlantic, Tom and Mellie develop a unique friendship despite not knowing the other's true identity. When both are transferred to Algeria, the two are poised to meet face-to-face for the first time. Will they overcome their fears and reveal who they are, or will their future be held hostage by their pasts?

Combining a flair for romance with excellent research and attention to detail, Sarah Sundin vividly brings to life the perilous challenges of WWII aviation, nursing--and true love. 

I GIVE THIS BOOK:1 star1 star1 star1 star1 star

With Every Letter is an amazing novel! It’s rich in detail about WWII, but doesn’t overwhelm you in it.

Mellie Blake is a woman who is shy, scared of putting herself at risk and so is very lonely. She has a hard time making friends, mostly because of her preconceived ideas of how people see her – which were ingrained in her from her childhood, when children would make fun of her.

Lt. Newman, Mellie’s chief nurse, loves the movie Shop Around the Corner and gets an idea of how to do something like it in real life. With the help of her husband, Capt. Newman of the 908th, she has all the nurses in her charge write letters to all the men in her husband’s platoon…anonymously!

Mellie at first didn’t want to participate in it, but she was ordered to do so. Her letter finds its way to Tom MacGilliver, a man who has been teased mercilessly since childhood because of what his father did. Tom has never had any real friends because of it, and sees this anonymous letter writing as a Godsend. He can confide in someone and not have to worry that he will be rejected because of his name – which is one of his deepest concerns.

Unbeknownst to one of them, they meet in real life, but will they connect as much as they do in their letters? Or, will fear of rejection keep them apart?

The ending was SO funny and romantic! I have read all of Sundin’s books and she has a way of capturing my interest from page one. I get lost in her books and hate it when I reach the last page – I am greatly looking forward to reading the next book in this series. I highly recommend this book to anyone who loves historical fiction.

“Available September 2012 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

***I received a complimentary copy of this book to review. I was asked to give my honest opinion of the book - which I have done.***

If you found this review helpful, will you please click yes HERE. Thanks!


  • Paperback: 425 pages
  • Publisher: Revell (September 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0800720814
  • ISBN-13: 978-0800720810
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 1.1 x 8.5 inches
  • Available to purchase: Amazon/Christian Book/ Barnes & Noble

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Win a Kindle or Nook from @SarahSundin and RSVP for “With Every Letter” Facebook Party 9/27!

Celebrate with Sarah by entering to win a eReader (winner's choice of Kindle Fire or Nook Color)!

See what folks are saying about With Every Letter!

One fortunate winner will receive:
  • A Kindle Fire or Nook Color (winner’s choice)
  • Handmade With Every Letter First Aid Kit
  • With Every Letter by Sarah Sundin
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 26th. Winner will be announced at the “With Every Letter” Author Chat Facebook Party on 9/27. Connect with Sarah, get a sneak peek of her next book, try your hand at a trivia contest, and chat with readers just like yourself. There will also be gift certificates, books and a Book Club Prize Pack to be won (10 copies for your book club or small group)!

So grab your copy of With Every Letter and join Sarah on the evening of the September 27th for a chance to connect with Sarah and make some new friends. (If you haven’t read the book – don’t let that stop you from coming!)
Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter
Don't miss a moment of the RSVP today. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 27th!

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Saturday, September 22, 2012

Fall Into Reading 2012

This is a fun challenge that I recently found and is hosted by Callapidder Days. What you do is list the books that you would like to read during September 22-December 21 and then try to read them all. :)

These are the books I would like to read:

Saving Gideon: A Clover Ridge Novel
A Matter of Time
Autumn Winds
Precedent: Book Three: Covenant of Trust Series
The Trouble with Cowboys
The Memory Jar
Shatter Me
Christmas At Holly Hill
Touching the Sky
River of Mercy
The Doctor's Lady
Chasing the Sun
River's Call - The Inn at Shining Waters Series
Rosemary Opens Her Heart
Beside Two Rivers
A Great and Terrible Beauty
House of Mercy

What books are you planning on reading this fall?

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