9/16/14

Candle Prayers For Kids - Claire Freedman

5 Stars

ABOUT THE BOOK -
A delightful companion prayer book to the popular Candle Bible for Kids. Jo Parry's distinctively bold and vibrant illustrations complement a combination of traditional and modern prayers by Claire Freedman, author of the Benjamin Bear series. Candle Prayers for Kids helps to bring prayer and talking to God into the life of every child.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR AND ILLUSTRATOR-
 Claire Freedman lives on the Essex coast. She is the author of a number of children’s books, and has also written for Little Tiger Press. When not writing, Claire spends her time sailing, walking in the countryside, and traveling.
Jo Parry trained at Bournemouth Arts Institute before becoming a full-time artist. She illustrates mainly greetings cards, fine art, and children’s books, adapting her fun, colorful style to each of these genres. She creates her characteristic style using an Apple Mac, and is fulfilling a lifelong dream working as an illustrator. Jo lives in Bournemouth, on England’s south coast.

MY REVIEW -
This is a great tool to use when teaching a child how to pray. The pictures in this book are gorgeous, definitely very appealing to children. There are all kinds of prayers in here - 
*best friend moved away
*help at school
*afraid of storms
*prayers for pets
and so many more!
Its all broken up into chapters so its easy to find what they will need for the day. You could even have the child explain what kind of prayer they feel they need and have them help find one. I think this is a great way to teach kids that there really is a prayer for EVERYTHING! I pray all the time, for everything that happens in my life, good or bad, I pray about it. I think it is so important to teach kids that as well. You can never start too young. This book is perfect for those younger ones - it is simple enough and so cute that they will love it!

Here are a couple pictures of the pages -


Thank you Kregel Publications for sending me this book for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE

Tried and True - Mary Connealy (with a giveaway)

4 Stars

ABOUT THE BOOK - 
Kylie Wilde is the youngest sister--and the most civilized. Her older sisters might be happy dressing in trousers and posing as men, but Kylie has grown her hair long and wears skirts every chance she gets. It's a risk--they are homesteading using the special exemptions they earned serving in the Civil War as "boys"--but Kylie plans to make the most of the years before she can sell her property and return to the luxuries of life back East.

Local land agent Aaron Masterson is fascinated with Kylie from the moment her long hair falls from her cap. But now that he knows her secret, can he in good conscience defraud the U.S. government? And when someone tries to force Kylie off her land, does he have any hope of convincing her that marrying him and settling on the frontier is the better option for her future? 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR -
Mary Connealy is a Carol Award winner, and a Rita and Christy and Inspirational Reader's Choice finalist.
She is the author of bestselling Kincaid Brides Series: Out of Control, In Too Deep, Over the Edge. Her work also includes Lassoed in Texas Trilogy, Montana Marriages Trilogy and Sophie's Daughters Trilogy.
She also wrote Ten Plagues--a romantic thriller, and The Historical Society Murders--three cozy mysteries, under the name Mary Nealy.
Mary is married to a Nebraska rancher and has four grown daughters and two spectacular grandchildren.
Visit her website - HERE

MY REVIEW -
I have been wanting to read a Mary Connealy book - this is my first one and now I have plans to read the rest of the series.
This story is real cute and very nicely done. Its fast paced, fun, and with just enough going on. I love a good western historical and this was a great one. I loved all the little plot twists, just enough to keep it interesting but still a quick and fun read.

The characters were what what made this book for me. I really liked Kylie and her sisters. They all had different personalities, were all unique and fun. I am hoping the rest of the series is about them, I really want to know more!
Aaron, the male lead was also very likable! I liked him right from the start. He did a few thing that I didn't like but did understand why he did them.

There were lots of cute, fun scenes along with some suspense and mystery. All-in-all a very cute, clean, quick, and very enjoyable read!

Thank you Litfuse for giving me this book for my honest review.

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE

Mary's celebrating by connecting with readers during a live webcast event and giving away a Kindle HDX.
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One winner will receive:
  • A Kindle HDX
  • Tried & True by Mary Connealy
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 23rd. Winner will be announced at the Tried & True LIVE webcast event on September 23rd. Connect with Mary for an evening of swoon-worthy book chat, fun trivia, laughter, a sneak peek at the next book in the Wild at Heart series, and more! Mary will also be taking questions from the audience and giving away books, fun prizes, and gift certificates throughout the evening.

So grab your copy of Tried & True and join Mary and friends on the evening of September 23rd for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, don't let that stop you from coming!)

Don't miss a moment of the fun; RSVP today by signing up for a reminder. Tell your friends via FACEBOOK or TWITTER and increase your chances of winning. Hope to see you on the 23rd!

9/15/14

Nest - Esther Ehrlich

3 Stars

ABOUT THE BOOK -
In 1972 home is a cozy nest on Cape Cod for eleven-year-old Naomi “Chirp” Orenstein, her older sister, Rachel; her psychiatrist father; and her dancer mother. But then Chirp’s mom develops symptoms of a serious disease, and everything changes.
   Chirp finds comfort in watching her beloved wild birds. She also finds a true friend in Joey, the mysterious boy who lives across the street. Together they create their own private world and come up with the perfect plan: Escape. Adventure. Discovery.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR - 
Esther Ehrlich is the author of Nest, her debut novel forthcoming from Wendy Lamb Books/Random House in September 2014. Ehrlich was born and raised in Boston, graduated from Vassar College, and lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her family. 

Visit her website - HERE


MY REVIEW -
First let me say that I love the cover! 
The book started out a little slow for me but did pick up towards the middle enough for me to really enjoy it. I loved the characters Chirp was cute, fun, interesting and I loved her independence! This story ended up being quite a sad book. I think that is what saved it for me - I love sad books.

On the neg. side - It jumped around a bit and wasn't always easy to follow.
This book is intended for grades 4 - 7, well I don't think kids that young would be interested in this book. Its not that it is inappropriate - its fine that way. Like I said - its slow in the beginning and gets very sad, not really something a young reader would like. Also it takes place in the 70's again not really for young readers - I don't think they would get many of the references. I got them! But I don't think they would.
I did Daycare for years - I watched 4th, 5th, and 6th graders and I know none of them would like this book.

On the other hand - If it is a coming of age book about a young girl written for adults - I would score it higher. I enjoyed reading this one and do look forward to seeing more from this new author.

I got this book from Netgalley for my honest review.

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE

9/13/14

Slave Again - Alana Terry - Spotlight and Giveaway!

Special Discount ~ Limited Time Only
Special Time-Sensitive Giveaway! The first 25 readers who enter the giveaway below will receive a free audiobook from award-winning author Alana Terry. She's also giving away a $100 amazon card, a hundred free audio downloads, and a free ebook to anyone who signs up! 

About Slave Again: After escaping a North Korean prison camp, Mee-Kyong is hustled over the border and sold into the Chinese underworld. She vows to survive, but sheer determination and willpower won’t save her this time. Is she fated to remain a slave forever?

Slave Again is a Christian suspense novel from award-winning author Alana Terry, whose debut novel, The Beloved Daughter, won awards from Women of Faith, Grace Awards, The Book Club Network, and Readers' Favorite.

NEW BOOK RELEASE: Slave Again by Alana Terry is hot off the press, and both the ebook and paperback are at a steep (30-60%) discount!! Prices will go up soon, so grab your copy today.

 Slave Again book trailer (contains one mildly violent image)

About the Author: Alana is passionate about human-rights issues in North Korea and has devoted her writing to raise both awareness and funds to help North Korean refugees find freedom and safety. You can learn more about her work with Liberty in North Korea at alanaterry.com/link.

Check out Slave Again now before the price goes up, and don't forget to enter the giveaway!


a Rafflecopter giveaway

9/12/14

Fun Friday! - Packing - not so fun.

I'm sure nobody enjoys packing but if you are moving it is a necessity!


 Down to packing the serious stuff now -
Martina says "Don't forget to take me!"
There is a light at the end of the tunnel - a new house waiting for us!
The closing is next week and then we will start moving stuff in. 

9/10/14

The Story Keeper - Lisa Wingate

3 Stars  :-(

ABOUT THE BOOK -
Successful New York editor, Jen Gibbs, is at the top of her game with her new position at Vida House Publishing -- until a mysterious manuscript from an old slush pile appears on her desk. Turning the pages, Jen finds herself drawn into the life of Sarra, a mixed-race Melungeon girl trapped by dangerous men in the turn of the century Appalachia. A risky hunch may lead to The Story Keeper's hidden origins and its unknown author, but when the trail turns toward the heart of the Blue Ridge Mountains, a place Jen thought she'd left behind forever, the price of a blockbuster next book deal may be higher than she's willing to pay.
 
ABOUT THE AUTHOR -
Lisa Wingate is a former journalist, inspirational speaker, and the author of over twenty mainstream fiction novels, including the national bestseller, Tending Roses, now in its nineteenth printing. She is a seven-time ACFW Carol award nominee, a Christy Award nominee, an Oklahoma Book Award finalist, and a two-time Carol Award winner. Her novels are known for taking on gritty subjects while offering redemptive and uplifting themes. Recently, the group Americans for More Civility, a kindness watchdog organization, selected Lisa along with Bill Ford, Camille Cosby, and six others, as recipients of the National Civies Award, which celebrates public figures who work to promote greater kindness and civility in American life.

MY REVIEW -
First let me say that I am a HUGE fan of Lisa Wingate. She is one of my top favorite authors right now. This however was not my favorite book by her. This got great, rave reviews on Amazon - so I obviously was missing something.
 
The problems for me - This was very slow for me until about half way through but by then it was too late I was already not interested. This was a book within a book and I am not a fan of that style. I have read others and I didn't care for them either. Also there was the past, so really 3 stories? Too much for me. I think Lisa was trying to get "deep" and more complicated. The problem for me is that I like them simple! I love her old simple Christian love stories. I don't need something complicated and deep.

I liked the main character. The character development was good but I didn't really "feel" anything for her. The story within a story - I didn't like the characters at all.

I didn't hate this book - I did keep reading but it was far from my favorite. I love Lisa as an author and definitely will keep reading her books.
They say don't judge a book by its cover. Well - don't judge this book by my review! There are lots of people who loved it!

Thank you Tyndale for sending me this book for my honest review!

Get your copy from Amazon - HERE

9/9/14

All's Fair In Love and Cupcakes - Betsy St. Amant (with a giveaway!)

4 Stars

ABOUT THE BOOK -
Kat Varland has had enough of chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry.

At twenty-six years old, Kat is still living in the shadows of her family in Bayou Bend, Louisiana. Still working shifts at her Aunt Maggie's bakery. Still wondering what to do with her passion for baking and her business degree. And still single.

But when Lucas Brannen, Kat's best friend, signs her up for a reality TV bake-off on Cupcake Combat, everything Kat ever wanted is suddenly dangled in front of her: creative license as a baker, recognition as a visionary . . . and a job at a famous bakery in New York.

As the competition heats up, Lucas realizes he might have made a huge mistake. As much as he wants the best for Kat, the only thing he wants for himself---her---is suddenly in danger of slipping away.

The bright lights of reality cooking wars and the chance at a successful career dazzle Kat's senses and Lucas is faced with a difficult choice: help his friend achieve her dreams . . . or sabotage her chances to keep her in Louisiana.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR -
Betsy St. Amant lives in Louisiana with her young daughter and has a heart for sharing the amazing news of God's grace through her novels. A freelance journalist, Betsy is a member of American Christian Fiction Writers. When she's not reading, writing, or singing along to a Disney soundtrack with her daughter, Betsy enjoys inspirational speaking and teaching on the craft of writing.
Visit her website - HERE

MY REVIEW -
Oh this book was so adorable! I loved the writing style right from the beginning. It was very Chick-lit-ish and I love that. This story was very romantic. I was blushing at times (and there was no sex!). I love when a book can make you blush with no sex.

Both the female and male lead characters were great, I loved them both. They were very likable and very believable.  Lucas was the kind of man you fall in love with instantly, I was rooting for him from the beginning. But - have you ever wanted to yell at a book - "JUST TELL HER YOU LOVE HER!!!!!" but then if he did that the book would only be 5 pages long LOL.

The POV switched back and forth between him and Kat and I like when books do that. It lets us see what both are thinking. And I like to see what's in the guys head as well.

Very nice little love story! Fun and quick. I would definitely read another by this author!

Thank you Litfuse for send me this e-book for my honest review!


cupcakes-400-click
Betsy is celebrating with a fun Kindle giveaway and a Love & Cupcakes Facebook party! One winner will receive:
  • A brand new Kindle
  • All's Fair in Love and Cupcakes by Betsy St. Amant
Enter today by clicking one of the icons below. But hurry, the giveaway ends on September 18th. Winner will be announced at the "Love & Cupcakes" Author Chat Party on 9/18. Betsy will be hosting a "sweet" book chat, giving away prizes, and answering questions from readers. She will also share an exclusive sneak peek at her next book project!

So grab your copy of All's Fair in Love and Cupcakes and join Betsy on the evening of September 18th for a chance to connect and make some new friends. (If you haven't read the book, 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 18th!