“Fairy tales are more than true; not because they tell us that dragons exist, but because they tell us that dragons can be beaten.” ― G.K. Chesterton

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Get in the Mood for Christmas with "Christmas at Carnton" by Tamera Alexander (Review)

"Christmas at Carnton" by Tamera Alexander is a sweet Christmas novella that will get you in the Christmas spirit.  “Christmas at Carnton” is the second book I’ve read by this author.  It’s a novella to start off a new "Carnton" series.  It is a longer novella at a little over 200 pages.  It's the perfect read for a cozy winter's night.

"Christmas at Carnton" reminds me of a great Hallmark movie.  Its characters are real, flawed people who you grow to care about.  I especially like our heroine, Aletta, who is recently widowed with a young son and another child on the way.  On top of that she loses her job and home.  She has a strong faith that shines despite her hardships.  She prays for others, helps people even when she is barely making it herself, and shows a great deal of courage.  She is a wonderful picture of strength amidst great hardship.

"Christmas at Carnton" is an excellent story.  I appreciate how Ms. Alexander puts a lot of history in, so you really feel like you've learned something while reading a great book.  This tale shows the hardships women faced during the Civil War as well as Southerners.  Being from the North, I don't know as much about the South and their side of the story.  They are real people with hopes and dreams, some good and some bad.  Most of the people Aletta knows don't even own slaves and they see the War as being more than just about the issue of slavery.  Bravo, Ms. Alexander, for shining light on the lesser known stories of the War and making history come alive!

Content: I would give this book a PG rating.  There is talk of a man banishing his wife's doubts that he desires her and then lying in bed and talking with her after the fact.  There are hints that a woman who is behind on her mortgages is giving a man at the bank favors of a sordid nature.  The word Negro is used, but not in a derogatory way.

Rating: I give this book 4 stars.

Genre: Christian Historical Fiction; Romance

I want to thank Tamera Alexander, Thomas Nelson and the Fiction Guild for the complimentary copy of this book for review.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.

About the Author:

Tamera Alexander is the USA Today bestselling author of numerous books, including A Lasting Impression, A Note Yet Unsung, To Whisper Her Name, and To Wager Her Heart

Her richly drawn characters and thought-provoking plots have earned her devoted readers worldwide, as well as multiple industry awards.

These awards include the Christy Award for Excellence in Christian fiction, the RITA Award for Best Inspirational Romance, the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence, Bookseller’s Best Award, and being listed among Publishers Weekly and Library Journal’s Top Inspirational Fiction, among others.

Tamera's books have been translated into numerous languages. She's toured Germany and The Netherlands meeting readers, and cherishes those connections.

She hopes readers who pick up one of her novels will be swept away into another time and place, that they'll fall in love with the characters and gain insights into the history of the setting and people of yesteryear. But most of all, when a reader turns that final page in one of her novels, she prays they will have taken a step closer to Christ. Because He's what it's all about.

After living in Colorado for nearly two decades, Tamera and her husband now make their home in Nashville where they enjoy life with their two adult children who live nearby, and Murphy—a rambunctious but oh-so-lovable Australian Terrier.

To visit the author's website click here

To purchase this book click here

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

"The Baker's Daughter" by D.P. Cornelius Blog Tour and GIVEAWAY!


Genre:  Christian, Fiction, Historical, Young Adult
Publisher: LPC
Publication date: February 1, 2017

After her carelessness lands her boyfriend in the hands of a Nazi officer, seventeen-year-old Liddy questions her worthiness for God’s love. But, inspired by Bonhoeffer and Kolbe, she confronts evil, putting her own faith on the line in hopes of redeeming the officer and saving the family bakery.


In his debut Christian novel, Doug Cornelius hopes to inspire young adults to reflect on God’s unconditional love while re-living history’s experiences confronting evil. A Twin Cities, Minnesota native, retired from careers at Target, Amex, and 3M, he enjoys spending time with his wife, two children, three amazing grandchildren, complacent old dog, and frolicsome new cat, Selah.


Enter the giveaway HERE.



Thursday, November 9, 2017

An Epic Adventure!--"Where We Belong" by Lynn Austin Review

What an epic adventure!  Lynn Austin is a new author to me, but I will be looking up her other books after reading "Where We Belong".  If you like adventure, travel, strong female characters, and deep spiritual content, you will like "Where We Belong"!

This book is broken up into sections.  Each section is told from a different character's perspective.  Ms. Austin has great characters.  It truly is an epic story, following the character's lives from when they are young to middle-aged.  I especially liked reading from the middle-aged perspectives, as that is not often an age that is covered in this genre.  Because the book is broken into sections, it took me awhile to mentally change to the next character's perspective.  This also felt a bit abrupt at times.  But once I was able to make the change, I really enjoyed reading from so many different viewpoints.

One of our main characters, Rebecca, is a special favorite, as she doesn't care what others think, and has a strong faith.  She doesn't worry about her life or safety, but trusts God with her future.  She also loves reading, adventure and traveling.  Rebecca (Becky) and her sister, Flora, do unconventional things in the Victorian era, like traveling across a desert with only a young butler as an escort.  They have so many escapades–such as haggling in Arabic at a market, skipping school to have an adventure, and exercising in bloomers.  Travel and adventure lovers will find kindred spirits in Flora and Becky with their free spirits, wanderlust and adventures around the world. 

This story takes readers all over the world.  The descriptions of the settings are amazing!  I felt the sand blowing against the tent as I was transported to the Sinai desert.  This is one of those books where you settle down and really immerse yourself in the story.  It's not a quick read, but it is so rich and fulfilling.  "Where We Belong" has themes of trusting God, finding one’s purpose and God's plan for our life.  This book is just so well written.  I would put this author up there with Liz Curtis Higgs and Francine Rivers.

Content:  This is a clean read.  I would give it a PG rating due to a bit of content.  It is a little graphic when describing the tenements in a poor area.  There is talk of a man's harem.  One man almost says the word for an illegitimate child.  There is talk of a man getting drunk and beating a character.  A man tries to grab a girl.  There is a scene where a girl gets forced into a brothel. There is a lot of content which alludes to the activities in a brothel.

Rating: I give this book 5 stars.

Genre:  Christian Historical Fiction; Victorian; Adventure

I want to thank Lynn Austin and Bethany House Publishers for the complimentary copy of this book for review.  I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.

About the Author:
Lynn and her husband have three children and make their home in Illinois. 
Winner of 8 Christy Awards for Excellance in Christian Fiction.  Author of 19 books, over 1 million copies sold!  In addition to writing Lynn is a popular speaker at conferences, retreats and various church, school and library events.

To visit the author's website click here

To purchase the book click here

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

A New Favorite Non-Fiction Book--"Daring to Hope" by Katie Davis Majors Review

Wow!  That is the only word I could think as I slowly closed the last page of this book, sitting in a reverent silence.  This book touched me in such a profound way.  I don't feel a review will do it justice--you need to read it for yourself.  I see why it has become a bestseller on so many lists!

"Daring to Hope: Finding God's Goodness in the Broken and the Beautiful" by Katie Davis Majors is at first glance just another biography.  But it is so much more.  The words are so beautiful, the messages and spiritual truths so profound and the stories Katie shares so moving.  Katie wrote her first bestseller, "Kisses from Katie", in 2011.  I did not read that book, but had heard so much about Katie and her story; how when she was eighteen years old she moved to Uganda, adopted 13 girls and founded a ministry.  "Daring to Hope" is the continuation of that story. 

Katie herself is an amazing writer.  Her style is poetic and lyrical.  She is very honest and shares deep truths.  In “Daring to Hope”, she tells her story of finding God in brokenness and suffering.  She goes through some really hard times where she questions God.  God doesn't always give her the answers or what she asks for, but He gives her Himself, which is the best and most satisfying gift. 

This is a message that we as Americans especially need to hear.  We often believe that the "American Dream" is a sign of God's blessing, but Katie points out so many instances of faithful believers in Uganda who are starving, dying or can't afford basic medical care.  This does not mean they aren't blessed or aren't faithful. 

I highlighted huge portions of this book.  I came away with so many truths to help me, especially as I have been coming out of a hard season of my own life.  I have had many of the same questions Katie has had, and the answers she provides and how she points one to God have been such a comfort to my heart.  My faith has grown thanks to reading this book.  I recommend this book to anyone who has been through suffering and wondered where God was, to anyone who is wrestling with God or even wondering if that is okay.  If you want to be inspired or encouraged in your walk with God, this book is for you. 

Content:  I would give this book a PG rating, due to some content related to Katie's ministry.  Katie's ministry is to people who go through some very hard things.  As she describes her ministry, there is some more "graphic" content, like birth and treating wounds.  There are alcoholics, addicts, murder and poisoning. 

Rating:  I give this book a solid 5 stars!  It's a new favorite!

Genre:  Christian non-fiction; Biography

I want to thank Katie Davis Majors, Multnomah Publishing and Blogging for Books for the complimentary copy of this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express in this review are my own. This is in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s CFR 16, Part 255.

About the Author:

Katie Davis Majors moved to Uganda over a decade ago with no idea that this would be the place that God chose to build her home and her family. Today, she is a wife to Benji and mama to her fourteen favorite people. Katie and her family invest their lives in empowering the people of Uganda with education, medical care, and spiritual discipleship. She is also the founder of Amazima Ministries, an organization that cares for vulnerable children and families in Uganda and the author of the New York Times bestseller Kisses from Katie.

To visit the authors website click here and learn more about Katie click here

To purchase the book, find out more information and read an excerpt click here