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Thursday, June 30, 2011

The Protector


Every woman craves the attention and protection of the man who will love her and keep her safe. Yet ever since she was a child, Ella has accepted the fact that no one wants to be her friend. She believes it's due to her tall stature, the fact she has to wear glasses so she can see, and her plain, old brown hair. No one has ever wanted to be friends with Ella, except her best friend Corrine. So Ella has resolved to stay alone, and take care of her parents. She knows no one will ever fall in love with her.

Fate steps into her life when her father passes away and she has to care for her ailing mother. When she too passes away, Ella is forced to auction off her families belongings and farm just to be able to live with no other family. What's worse is that the boy she had a crush on in her childhood, Loyal Weaver, is now the man who is buying up all her belongings as well as the home she thought she would always live in.

Now she lives in a small apartment in town with her friend, Dorothy, who has agreed to provide her with a place to stay and a job. After all since no one will ever fall in love with Ella, she doesn't think the arrangement isn't too bad. It seems to work out for the best until Ella begins to spend too much time with Loyal and Corrine and not enough time with her. All of a sudden, Ella begins to question her safety the more time she spends with Dorothy. Will she ever find love or will she be left all alone just like she has always believed.

In the sequel to Shelley Shepard Gray's Families of Honor series, The Protector, picks up right where the Caregiver left off. This is a wonderful transition into the second book and I completely enjoyed this one as much as the first one. This time we get to know more about Ella Hostetler's life growing up in the Amish community alone without her family to support and guide her. Living a life as a woman alone, it makes her choices more difficult, not knowing if there are what is best for her. We also get to experience what is must feel like to be treated like an outsider within your own community through Ella's eyes and just how God will chose to answer her prayers.

I received this book compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and LOVED it. Now I can't wait for the continuation in this series with The Survivor coming out in the fall of 2011. This book rates a 5 out of 5 stars for a great Amish romance story that will leave the reader wanting more!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

The Constantine Codex - Giveaway and Review



A shocking discovery throws Harvard professor Jonathan Weber into the international spotlight---and could change the way the world sees the Bible. While touring Greek and Turkish monasteries, he finds an ancient manuscript that includes a lost ending of Mark and a 67th book. When the codex is stolen, Jon races to recover it---before it's lost forever!

Renowned church historian and novelist Dr. Paul Maier revives the beloved character Dr. Jonathan Weber (Skeleton in God's Closet, and More Than a Skeleton) to envision the lost ending to Mark...and a Second Acts. His seamless inclusion of canonical history into the suspenseful tale ensures readers come away with a greater understanding of the origins of Scripture and the lengths to which early Christians went to ensure the continuation of the gospel story

Aside from fascinating details and engrossing storytelling, The Constantine Codex includes an open, rigorous debate between Dr. Weber and a moderate leader of Islam that should serve as a worthy example for real-world engagements.

My Review:

Just like a modern day Indiana Jones type of fiction, The Constantine Codex by Paul L. Maier, will leave readers on the edge of their seat as Dr. Jon Weber and his wife Shannon uncover what is first, five, weathered pieces of text being used as a book mark. Not seeing anything on them, they use techniques now available to see text that has faded away, been covered over or merely erased from it's original form. What they first uncover is a reference to another book of the Bible that picks up where Paul is awaiting his sentencing from Nero in Rome. Unlike the previous records of Paul's ministry as the book of Acts ends, it leaves the reader wondering just what happened to Paul. Not only that but the end of Mark's book in the Bible just seems to fade to black.

What they uncover by digging through ancient manuscripts being housed by the monks and in catholic churches in Greece and in Turkey will be the greatest biblical discovery since the Dead Sea Scrolls.

I received this book compliments of Glass Roads Public Relations and Tyndale House Publishers for my honest review and this one rates a 5 out of 5 stars!!! You will be hooked from the first chapter as you find yourself in the Middle East searching with the Weber's looking for these lost biblical treasures amid the Muslim protests that want Dr. Jonathan Weber dead at any cost.

For more information about this book, the author and where to purchase a copy, click on the links below:


I am giving away a copy of this book to one lucky follower of my blog. Here are your guidelines to enter:

1. Be a follower of my blog, Reviews From The Heart.

2. Must be a resident of the US or have a US shipping address. Please No P.O. Boxes.

3. I must have a way to contact you if you are the lucky winner, so please be sure to include your email address along with your comment. You can use the words (at) and (dot) instead of the symbols.

4. Leave a comment telling me what your favorite book of the Bible is and why.

The giveaway will end on July 9th and I will contact the winner by email at that time.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Bridge To A Distant Star


Three families are about to find themselves united in an expected way and their lives will never be the same again.

On a foggy morning as the clouds began to thunder overhead, a weary captain leered out of the windows attempting to see just how far from the pillars of the Sunshine Skywall Bridge in Tampa Bay he was. Keeping in between the buoy markers would help steer his empty cargo ship in the safety of deeper waters. Even as the lightning struck overhead at times lighting up the dark skies, it still wasn't enough to aid the captain on his journey. Before it was too late, disaster would strike and there wouldn't be anything he could do except look into the dark murky waters for survivors.

Maureen Roberts is struggling to find herself within her marriage and to find a way to happiness in serving her family. When her close friend Emilie tells her and two close friends over lunch that her marriage is on the rocks and her husband is leaving her, Maureen begins to feel her own walls closing in around her.

Charlie Thomasen is a bright young soccer hopeful for his high school team and one who is trying to live up to all the expectations his over enthusiastic father has in mind for him. A believer of never give up and push through the pain, his father pushes Charlie to the literally breaking point before he will see what he has been sacrificing all along.

Michal McHenry has been deemed a MK or a missionary kid. Leaving her parents behind in Ethiopia she has been attending boarding school hoping to learn enough so she can join her parents as a missionary as well. But since arriving, she's been having nightmares about returning. Finding solace in her studies and in her friends, Michal prays for God to show her the path He has in mind for her. Not sure if she should date, she visits her Aunt Sarah for clarification on summer break. What she finds there may not answer the question she really needs an answer for.

In the latest novel Bridge to a Distant Star by Carolyn Williford, she takes the story from an accident that occurred in May 9th of 1980 and creates a cast of characters and immediately immerses us into their lives. We become such a part of them that when they face tragedy head on, it's as though they are a part of our family and we grieve for them. It's what happens at the very end that will tie the meaning of deny yourself and take up your cross and follow me to the very core of each of their lives.

I received this book compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance and David C Cook for my honest review and was hooked from the prologue. Not knowing the direction this author was taking me, I inhaled most of the story, not wanting to put it down until my eyes couldn't stay open any longer. This book is that great, worthy of 5 out of 5 stars and one, you won't want to miss out on. Care to take a sneak peek?

Then read on for more information on the author, the book, and a sneak peek into a book that you will no doubt want to pick up for yourself.

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Bridge to a Distant Star
David C. Cook; New edition (June 1, 2011)
by
Carolyn Williford


ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Carolyn Williford has authored seven books, including Jordan's Bend, Devotions for Families That Can't Sit Still, and Faith Tango, as well as numerous articles. She and her husband, Craig, live in Deerfield, Illinois, where he serves as president of Trinity International University. They have two children and four grandchildren.



ABOUT THE BOOK



It All Comes Tumbling Down

As a storm rages in the night, unwary drivers venture onto Tampa Bay’s most renowned bridge. No one sees the danger ahead. No one notices the jagged gap hidden by the darkness and rain. Yet when the bridge collapses vehicles careen into the churning waters of the bay below.

In that one catastrophic moment, three powerful stories converge: a family ravaged by their child’s heartbreaking news, a marriage threatened by its own facade, and a college student burdened by self doubt. As each story unfolds, the characters move steadily closer to that fateful moment on the bridge. And while each character searches for grace, the storms in their lives loom as large as the storm that awaits them above the bay.

When these characters intersect in Carolyn Williford’s gripping and moving volume of three novellas, they also collide with the transforming truth of Christ: Deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow me.

If you would like to read the first chapter of Bridge to a Distant Star, go HERE.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Folly Beach Giveaway and Review


Cate Cooper had the life most would envy. She had a beautiful mansion, great staff to wait upon her every need, family and friends who adored her and a husband who worked hard to get everything in life he believe he deserved. Yet Addison would stop at nothing to get what he wanted, no matter who he had to climb over to get it.

So besides the grief Cate feels when she finds Addison has committed suicide leaving behind the remnants of a sorry note, she is not ready for just how upside down her world is about to become. When women at the funeral announce they have not only been sleeping with her husband, some wonder who will provide for the children they had with Addison. She also learns that everything in her life will be taken from her leaving her with only her children and friends she can rely on.

Losing her home and everything in it, she agrees to move to Folly Beach to help her Aunt Daisy take care of some rental properties. She begins to restore her life as she stays in a home called Porgy which her aunt has named after the Heywards, who apparently stayed in the home during their lifetime while writing Porgy and Bess. It's through her time here that Cate begins to learn more about herself and the life she has left behind.

In the book, Folly Beach by Dorothy Benton Frank, the reader is delighted to a play woven into a fiction story. Part of the book involved a play involving Dorothy and DuBose living in their home in Folly Beach from their time as playwrites and actors from the 1920's and 30's. This play will eventually be something that Cate will write after spending time in the home and researching the characters of the Heywards while trying to get her own life right again. So what the reader is getting is a foreshadowing of Cate's future life as she uncovers more about the life of the Heywards.

I received this book compliments of TLC Book Tours for my honest review and LOVED it once I got the hang of how the story was woven together. I truly felt for the character of Cate who was dealt an unfortunate hand in losing her husband and in learning what a dual life he lived. This book is a great summer read and rates a 5 out of 5 stars. I love the duality that you get in a sense of having two books in one.

For more great information about this book, the author and where to purchase a copy, click on the link below:


Thanks to the generous folks at TLC Book Tours, they are offering a copy of this book to one lucky follower of this blog. Here are your guidelines:

1. Must be a follower of Reviews From The Heart.

2. You must be a resident of the US or have a US shipping address.

3. I need a way to contact you if you're the lucky winner, so please be sure to include your email address along with a comment of why you would love to win a copy. You can use the words (at) and (dot) instead of the symbols.

4. The giveaway will end on July 5th, so please be sure to leave me a comment telling me why you would love to win a copy. I will notify the winner by email.

Forever After




When a fire in a homeless shelter changes the lives of so many, will it be possible to rebuild on those dreams again?

Jenna Morgan lost her husband Zach in the fire, as a fireman who couldn't escape in time before the building collapsed. Now she is stuck with some secrets that she didn't reveal to anyone but Bryn her best friend and also the person responsible for setting the fire. Jenna's moved on beginning with forgiving Bryn, but the one person she can't forgive is herself. For living a lie the entire time she was married to Zach. Is it possible for her to find forgiveness in knowing God or will she be held back by her past?

Lucas Vermontez lost twice what Jenna did in the fire. He not only lost his father, but also the use of his legs when the building collapsed. Spending the last year in rehab completing physical therapy, he struggles with letting go on career as a fireman and moving forward to see what possibilities God has in store for him. He also struggles with the strong feelings he has for his best friend's wife, Jenna. Can God work to unite them both and heal their pasts?



In the latest novel, Forever After by Deborah Raney, we get to see how holding on to our past mistakes can not only leave us feeling worthless but also prevents God from carrying that burden for us and allowing us to leave it behind. I received this book compliments of Glass Roads Public Relations for my honest review and LOVED it. This is a perfect gift that shows us how too often we can be our own worst enemies to true happiness. This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars and is a must read.http://www.blogger.com/img/blank.gif

This is the second book by Deborah Raney from the Hanover Falls series. This is a great story of the love of God and the redemption He offers to anyone if they are only willing! For more information on this book, the author and where to purchase a copy of this book, click on the link below:


You can also follow Deborah Raney on Facebook by clicking here.

You can also visit her on her website by clicking here!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Maximal Reserve


What would you think if the information we have learned about in school on so called "Fossil Fuels" was all wrong?

What if it was more abundant that anyone ever thought and not only that but it was a renewable one?

How would that affect our world's economy and the power of those that have control over oil production now?

In the latest Christian, science fiction, suspense thriller, Maximal Reserve by Sam Batterman, uses those questions as a basis for the premise of his story. Axcess Energy is the newest up and coming company that promises that it will change the economy of the world through finding new sources for energy that would reduce our dependence on oil production.

Ripped from recent headlines, this vast and unknown oil reserve is located directly underneath Israel. If they could harness this, it would make them, the largest country to have oil over all and drastically change the way the world views Israel.

Philip Channing is hired by Dr. John Chambers to work for Axcess Energy as a geologist, to use the data they are uncovering beneath the mid-Atlantic ridge and find a way to tap into this source of oil and natural gas that lies deeper than anyone has ever known. It will be the ultimate job of a lifetime, until he discovers that people are willing to kill to keep this discovery unknown.

I received this book compliments of Bring It On Communications for my honest review and actually learned so much about the new theories about oil production and what really lies beneath the earth's surface and how far science may have gotten it wrong. I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars and would highly recommend it considering just how close this book is, to becoming not just a fiction based one but a true story after the discovery made in Israel recently.

For more information about this book, the author and where to purchase a copy, please click on the link below:

Maximal Reserve by Sam Batterman

You can visit Sam on his website by clicking here!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Holy Guacamole


"If you are what you eat, make it hot, spicy, and irresistible!" ~ Chef Bonnie Miller

In light of all the cooking shows on the Food Network channels these days, we all have our personal favorites. Some are funny, others serious, but what they all have in common is the ability to create masterpieces using ingredients that will tempt our palates and make our mouths water.

Chef Bonnie Miller is just one of those amazing cooks. She currently is the host of Cowgirl Cuisine, a southwestern cooking show in which she is the star. Behind the scenes she is difficult to deal with, a prima donna of sorts, who believes that she alone holds the secrets to cooking anything great. In between shooting her show, she hosts a culinary boot camp in which people are selected and trained to work as an apprentice at her restaurant, the Blue Coyote, doing a wide variety of tasks.

Trace Domingo finds himself the newest foodie, in Bonnie's boot camp. Working at a variety of restaurants himself along the California and Mexico coastlines, he wants to work with Bonnie to enhance his culinary skills. What he doesn't plan on, is an adventure of a lifetime as he learns more than just culinary skills from Bonnie.

In the newest novel by Dan & Denise Harmer, Holy Guacamole, is part culinary cooking show humor combined with a bit of spiciness blended in between Bonnie and Trace and their unusual chemistry that develops along the way. Throw in a great cast of characters from Kelp, their Jamaican gardener, Tornado, the world's first surfing goat and Marley and Jimmy the Knife, his other two room mates at culinary school, and you have the recipe for a great book.

I received Holy Guacamole compliments of Glass Roads Public Relations for my honest review and LOVED it all. I have to say my favorite characters where Kelp and Tornado, that add just the perfect blend to keep you on your toes and moving the story forward! Part of the proceeds from the sale of each book is donated to Outside the Bowl ministry that provides food for orphans around the world. This one cooks up a 5 out of 5 stars and makes for a delicious summer read.

For more information about this book, the authors, and where to purchase a copy of this, click on the links below:


Outside the Bowl Ministries

Friday, June 24, 2011

Inherit The Throne


Ever since September 11th, our government has been keeping tabs on everything we send and do, electronically. It's stored in data bases all over the US, from emails, to text messages and even phone calls.

So when Andrew Stovall, Vice President for the United States is kidnapped and replaced with a double to foil an assassination attempt on his life, things begin to get a bit complicated for covert ops teams working to stay on top of things.

While the media continues to broadcast stories of Stovall's death, the President, Alan Sparks goes on the defensive against any blackmail attempts. Seems a person of interest who goes by the name of Hannah is the one about to call all the shots.

Meanwhile, Melissa Stone whose been hiding out as a waitress named Karen in Oregon is about to be recalled back to active duty when her boyfriend Denny is abducted and she becomes the target of someone out to kill her and her family.

In the latest action packed suspense fiction, Inherit The Throne by Steve DeWinter, we get to see Melissa Stone become the newest Jason Bourne, working to save not only the President and Vice President but also her family which is now the target of someone out for revenge. I received this book compliments of Pump Up Your Book Tours and Steve DeWinter for my honest review and was surprised at how quickly I got through the book. It's that good, you don't want to put it down. I received the edition via my Kindle and loved the suspense and action from the very first page. I would rate this one a 5 out of 5 stars and it falls in line for those of you that love books by James Patterson.

This book is available on paperback and Kindle formats. For more information about the author, the book and where to purchase a copy, please click on the link below:

Inherit The Throne by Steve DeWinter

You can also visit Steve on his website by clicking here

  • Paperback: 334 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace (February 3, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1456403249
  • ISBN-13: 978-1456403249
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Price: $9.99 paperback/ $.99 Kindle
Find Steve DeWinter on Facebook by clicking here.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

She Makes It Look Easy


Two very different lives and both wishing to have some aspect of another's. Yet how very true is the saying, "The grass isn't always greener on the other side."

Take Ariel Baxter, busy mother of three boys and a wandering labrador named Lucky. Her schedule involves so much that Ariel can barely stay on top of things, like getting organized, remembering to not only have dinner on the table by the time her husband David gets home, but to make sure she has gone shopping so she has the ingredients. Now that she has moved into her "dream neighborhood" she vows that she will change and become a better wife and mom.

It will be easy for Ariel now thanks to her new neighbor, Justine Miller, the mom and wife who has it all together. From making bread from scratch, to the perfectly cleaned and organized home at all times, to the husband that takes about their first date with love in his eyes. Can she be too perfect? She provides classes at church to help other women organize and manage their lives more efficiently and Ariel wishes she could be half the woman, Justine is.

However, neither woman really sees the true picture, just the facade each of them has on the outside, what everyone else sees. Yet what lies underneath all the chaos and perfection will teach them something about themselves that they didn't see coming.

In the second novel by MaryBeth Whalen, She Makes It Look Easy, we get a chance to see things from two entirely different lives of married moms/wives. For me I could relate to Ariel because I am always trying to achieve that perfection I believe I need in order to be happy, thus making my family and home a happy place to be. What I am missing out on is life that is happening all around me, that moments of time are slipping away while I try to find a place for them. I can also see parts of myself in Justine, in being able to see that a perfect home is not what makes you happy inside.

I received this book compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and think this one rates a 5 out of 5 stars. I think all of us try in many ways to be someone we are not, this book shows you what happens when we stretch those boundaries a little to far before we realize just how far we have come. A must read with a very clear message and a fantastic summer read for super, busy moms!

Here's even more great information on this book, the author and where to get a sneak peek at the first chapter.
This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
She Makes It Look Easy
David C. Cook (June 1, 2011)
by
Marybeth Whalen




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:





Marybeth Whalen is the wife of Curt and mom of six children. The family lives outside Charlotte, NC. Marybeth is a member of the Proverbs 31 Ministries writing team and a regular contributor to their daily devotions. Her first novel,The Mailbox was released in June 2010. Her next novel, She Makes It Look Easy, will be released in June 2011. Additionally, she serves as director of She Reads, Proverbs 31 Ministries' fiction division.





ABOUT THE BOOK



Ariel Baxter has just moved into the neighborhood of her dreams. The chaos of domestic life and the loneliness of motherhood, however, moved with her. Then she meets her neighbor, Justine Miller. Justine ushers Ariel into a world of clutter-free houses, fresh-baked bread, homemade crafts, neighborhood play dates, and organization techniques designed to make marriage better and parenting manageable.



Soon Ariel realizes there is hope for peace, friendship, and clean kitchen counters. But when rumors start to circulate about Justine’s real home life, Ariel must choose whether to believe the best about the friend she admires or consider the possibility that “perfection” isn’t always what it seems to be.



If you would like to read an excerpt of She Makes It Look Easy, go HERE.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Spring for Susannah - Giveaway and Review




Seeing no hope for her own future, Susannah answers a letter from her pastor's brother, Jessie. Seems he has recently moved to the Dakota Territory and is looking for a wife that would suit his personality. Matt thinks Susannah is the perfect fit and she needs a new lease on life.

Now that her parents are dead, Susannah doesn't know where God even fits into her life anymore. After all her unanswered prayers to save her father and then her mother, she feels God doesn't want anything to do with her any longer. More than just hurt and shy, Susannah takes Matt up on the offer for a proxy wedding to his brother Jesse and leaves on the next train.

Jesse's been living on a large parcel of land hoping that in time, this town will build into something bigger and bring more folks to live in Worthington. Hoping to start a family with Susannah, he promises her more than she is willing to give in return. Jesse tries to bring Susannah out of her shell and whatever has hurt her in the past, but soon is seems, his only answer might be all his prayers to God instead.

Susannah has spent her life living in two separate shadows. One working side by side as an assistant to her father as a veterinarian in his practice, something her mother doesn't believe any upstanding, fine, young man would want in a wife and forbids her continue. Her mother believes that a wife should be seen and not heard, to serve her husband as a wife and provide a proper home, well-cooked meals, and not to have any wants or needs of her own. Yet when her family finances falls to a level where the bank comes to take it all away, Susannah isn't sure what to do anymore.

In the book Spring for Susannah by Catherine Richmond, we see just how difficult it is to live out on the prairie as a homesteader. Having some skills in dealing with animals, Susannah is more than her husband bargained for when he requested a wife. I would never have guessed just how difficult life for a woman would be, who had come from a life of privilege to a life of hard work. I love how Susannah's character struggles within herself to be the best she can for Jesse and try to let go of her past failings and her mother's wishes. This is a story of how God can use all circumstances for His good.

I received this book compliments of Litfuse Publicity for my honest review. A great story in Christian historical fiction, this one will whisk you away to the farm lands of Dakota and into the story of unconditional love. I give this one a 5 out of 5 stars.For more information on this book, the author and where to purchase this novel, click on the link below:

Spring for Susanna by Catherine Richmond

To celebrate her debut novel, Catherine and her publisher, Thomas Nelson, have teamed up to give away a Spring For Susannah Prize Package worth over $150!




One grand prize winner will receive:

* A brand new Latest Generation KINDLE with Wi-Fi and Pearl Screen

* Spring for Susannah by Catherine Richmond (for KINDLE)

To enter just click one of the icons below and then tell your friends! But hurry, giveaway ends on June 27th. Winner will be announced on Tuesday, June 28th at 5 PM (6PM MST, 7PM CST, & 8PM EST) during Catherine's Spring for Susannah Book Club Party on Facebook! Catherine is rustling up some fun for the party - she'll be chatting about the story behind her novel, hosting a book club chat, testing your mail-order bride trivia skills, and giving away some GREAT prizes! Don't miss the fun and tell your friends!



Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Book of Days




"All of my days were written in Your book and planned before a single one of them began." ~ Psalm 139:16

Cameron's dad was in the hospital because he was forgetting pieces of his life, like who his son was, who his wife was and where he was. Just days before he dies, he asks Cameron to visit. In a moment of clarity, he tells Cameron to find the book. He has seen it and touched it. He promises that what is happening to him will happen to Cameron too. If he doesn't want to lose his memories and be restored, he must find the book.

Eight years after his father dies, Cameron's wife, Jessie dies in a plane crash. In the moments remaining of her life, she tells him about the book. That he must find it. It will tell him things he needs to know. She also gives him a necklace with a rock on it. She tells him it provides the clues to help him find the book.

How could both of them have known about a book, and yet had never bothered to mention it until they are dying? Just what is in this book? Does it really exist?



In the suspense novel, Book of Days by James. L. Rubart, the reader is taken along with Cameron to search for a book known to some as the Book of Days. In it, are all the days of every persons life, past, present and future. But does it really exist? Combining his efforts with Ann Bannister, Jessie's best friend, the two embark on a journey that will lead them to places some wish to remain a secret and others will stop at nothing to find that mysterious book.

Once more James L. Rubart does the unthinkable and takes the reader on a journey of mystery and along the way, we all learn a little bit more about ourselves and the future that lies ahead of us. Very believable and even possible to imagine, that's what makes a great read for me. Once again 5 out of 5 stars and now can't wait to begin another journey soon with The Chair!

For more information about the book, the author and where to pick up his incredible books, click on the link below:


You can also follow James on his Facebook page by clicking here.

How Huge The Night


Sometimes we fail to see just how dark some parts of our life can be. Some times hate for one person's race can be just as dark, or how people can judge you based purely on the company you keep, while others will be blinded that all men are truly evil.

In the novel How Huge The Night by Heather and Lydia Munn we are called as witnesses into the lives of three very unique children thrown together by the circumstances of World War II. This novel is based on actual events and you, the reader will be held spell bound to see how each of them fare in the end.

First we meet, Julian Losier, whose family has just relocated to his father's hometown from Paris, France, fleeing Hitler's advancing army. Praying that his family will be safe, he begins attempting to live a normal life by attending school. However once people there learn that he is from Paris, he becomes treated as an outcast at school. Left all alone on the school ground, he only ally, is his roommate Benjamin, whose parents have left him in the care of the Losier family. He is a Jewish-German and his parents hope for a normal life and education for him.

However, Julian finds that he can quickly work his way into the social group of boys since they have treated him and Benjamin as outcasts. When he informs them of Benjamin's race and religion, it will cost Julian more than just being one of the in-crowd. Julian will have to chose which side he will stand with.

Meanwhile, Nina and Gustav have just lost their father as sickness claimed him in the middle of the night. Leaving them with instructions to burn their resident cards declaring themselves Jewish, he makes them promise to flee Austria and find a way to Italy where he hopes they can find safety. He makes Nina promise to cut her hair and assume the identity of Niko, a boy and warns her that men are evil.

Fleeing for their lives, they are befriended by a man who only asks to be called Herr. He agrees to show them the gaps in the fence lines between Austria and will get them to the border of Italy for 50,000 francs. When Niko fears that there is more to his intentions than helping them cross the border, the children make a run for it in the middle of the night, not realizing that Herr has their pack with all their money and food inside. How will they make it alone in the midst of the war to safety?

I received this book compliments of Kregel Publications for my honest review and couldn't put it down. I can't imagine being a young teen in any of the circumstances and try to find a way to make it through the impending war that is looming on the horizon, not sure how or if you or your family would make it out alive and who would you trust to help you along the way. This is an amazing story of survival in the most difficult circumstances and truly worth reading. For anyone who has a love for historical Christian fiction, than this one is a 5 out 5 star book.

Here's even more great information about the book, the authors and even where to purchase a copy of this wonderful novel.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Darkness Follows - Giveaway and Review



Sam Travis isn't quite sure how to put his life back together. After suffering from a fall, twenty stories from a roof he was working on and landing on his head, he has difficulty processing thoughts and organizing things after waking up from a coma after several weeks.

If it wasn't for his wife Molly, who has nursed him back to health, he isn't sure where he'd be at right now. His daughter Eva's love for him is unconditional just as it would be for any father.

However when Sam begins hearing his brother Tommy's voice in the middle of the night, he knows something is wrong inside. See Tommy has been dead for twenty one years. When Sam begins to black out during these auditory hallucinations, he awakens to find he has written something. A portion of a journal from a man by the name of Samuel Whiting, who served in the battle of Gettysburg. Yet it's in Sam's own handwriting. What he writes is eerie in detail but also in the claims of some kind of darkness that he following him, asking him to do his bidding.

Is this merely a coincidence, or has this darkness found it's way to Sam Travis as well and is using the writing to speak to him? Sam's daughter, Eva is worried. She insists that she is being told by a man, Jacob, who looks like he's been rolled in glue and covered in glitter, that her daddy is about to do something really bad. She needs to pray for him, to let him know that Jesus loves him and so does she. Her parents chalk this up to an imaginary friend.

In the latest novel, Darkness Follows by Mike Dellosso, the reader is catapulted from the first page into a walking nightmare along with Sam Travis. While his daughter and wife attempt to come to grips with the sanity that seems to be slipping away from Sam, he struggles to make sense with what is real and what he appears to be hallucinating. This is action packed with suspense and horror on page after page when you travel along the dark road with Sam into the nightmare he truly did not see coming, but his daughter did. This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars.

I did not see where this one was headed and I love that. Too many times when reading a suspense thriller, you can anticipate where it is going, and Mike Dellosso keeps you on the edge, the very edge. Not sure what will happen next, you will be holding your breath til the very end. I received this book compliments of Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Book Tours for my honest review and can say Mike Dellosso is part of my permanent library and one of my favorite authors. I can't wait to read his previous books as well as Frantic coming out soon. A word of caution, you may just want to read this one with the light on.


This book is now available in paperback and Kindle formats by clicking here. Here's even more great information about the book, the author and where to purchase a copy of this suspense thriller.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:

Born in Baltimore, Maryland, Mike now lives in Hanover, Pennsylvania, with his wife, Jen, and their three daughters. He writes a monthly column for Writer . . .Interrupted, was a newspaper correspondent/columnist for over three years, has published several articles for The Candle of Prayer inspirational booklets, and has edited and contributed to numerous Christian-themed Web sites and e-newsletters. Mike is a member of the American Christian Fiction Writers, the Christian Fiction Blog Alliance, the Relief Writer's Network, the International Christian Writers, and International Thriller Writers. His short stories have appeared with Amazon Shorts and in Coach's Midnight Diner genre anthology. He received his BA degree in sports exercise and medicine from Messiah College and his MBS degree in theology from Master's Graduate School of Divinity.

Mike Dellosso writes novels of suspense for both the mind and the soul. He writes to both entertain and challenge. In addition to his novels, Mike is also an adjunct professor at Lancaster Bible College and a faculty member at the Greater Philadelphia Christian Writer's Conference.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Sam Travis lives in a Civil War era farmhouse in Gettysburg, PA, where he awakens one morning to find an old journal with an entry by a Union soldier, Lt. Whiting…written in Sam’s own handwriting. When this happens several more times, both at night and during waking “trances,” Sam begins to question his own sanity while becoming obsessed with Lt. Whiting and his bone-chilling journal entries. As the entries begin to mimic Sam’s own life, he is drawn into an evil plot that could cost many lives, including his own.

Can the unconditional love of Sam's daughter, Eva, break through his hardened heart before a killer on the loose catches up with them and Sam’s past spurs him to do the unthinkable?



I am giving away a copy of this book to one lucky follower of my blog, Reviews From The Heart. Here are the guidelines to enter:

1. You must be a follower of my blog, Reviews From The Heart.

2. Go to Mike Dellosso's Facebook page and click on "Like."

3. You must be a resident of the US or have a US shipping address. Please No P.O. Boxes.,

4. Leave me your email address along with why you'd be interested in a winning this book. You can use the words (at) or (dot) instead of the symbols. The giveaway will end on June 30th.

Mike is also hosting a contest for teens who are up and coming writers. You can check out all the details on his website, by clicking here.

For even more amazing reviews on this book, check out these blogs:

Noah Arsenault
Red Bissell
Thomas Clayton Booher
Beckie Burnham
Melissa Carswell
Karri Compton
http://csffblogtour.com/"> CSFF Blog Tour
Chris Deane
http://in--and--out.blogspot.com/"> Cynthia Dyer
Nikole Hahn
Katie Hart
Ryan Heart
http://www.613media.com/"> Bruce Hennigan
Jason Joyner
Julie
Carol Keen
Inae Kyo
Shannon McDermott
Allen McGraw
Shannon McNear
http://rebeccaluellamiller.wordpress.com/"> Rebecca LuElla Miller
Joan Nienhuis
Sarah Sawyer
Kathleen Smith
Jessica Thomas
Steve Trower
Fred Warren
Phyllis Wheeler

Winning Him Without Words

This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
Winning Him Without Words
Regal (February 15, 2011)
by
Lynn Donovan & Dineen Miller




ABOUT THE AUTHORS:



Lynn Donovan

Verse: John 15:5 Apart from Me you can do nothing.

Tagline: Challenging Women to Live in Truth

A passionate writer and speaker, Lynn is a woman who presents a compelling message to encourage women to thrive in their marriage. She speaks at events nationwide where she challenges the myths women believe about love, pointing them to life-changing freedom through a relationship with Jesus. She reveals the zany yet meaningful stories of marriage challenges, truths, and triumphs in her life and invites women to share her view from her front row seat to an amazing journey; life lived for Christ.

Married since 1992 to her best friend and biggest enthusiast, Mike, she lives in Temecula, California. They have a son and a daughter and a wacky dog named Peanut. She loves to laugh, enjoys a strong cup of coffee and Fantasy Football and not necessarily in that order.

She lives each day in awe of the grace of God in her ordinary life.


Dineen Miller

Verse: Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Tagline: Igniting the Soul



Dineen readily admits that one of the greatest lessons she’s learning about life is that there’s purpose in our trials. And it’s all about trusting God and putting our hope in Him. Her favorite stories will always be of the miracles God has wrought in the lives of her family.

Through this lens she also believes her years as a youth counselor, a Stephen Minister, a women’s ministry leader, and a small group leader have prepared her for God’s calling on her life—to write for and speak to those in mismatched marriages like hers.

In addition to writing for Spiritually Unequal Marriage, Dineen writes for Laced with Grace and various other fiction online magazines and newsletters. She’s also won several prestigious awards for her fiction, and her devotional writing has been featured in Our Journey and Christian Women Online Magazine.

Married for 23 years to a guy who keeps her young, she lives in the Bay Area with her husband, two precious daughters, and their dog Shasta, who no doubt is an angel in disguise.

ABOUT THE BOOK

Week after week, they sit in church . . . alone. They are the spiritually mismatched, those who are committed to a spouse who does not share their faith. Feeling abandoned by their spouse and forgotten by their church, they live out their faith in survival mode, guarding the spiritual flame yet never feeling free to share it. But God wants them to thrive—not just survive.

Winning Him Without Words presents 10 Christ centered keys to thriving in a spiritual mismatch. Readers are encouraged to commit to Christian community, to release their spouse to God’s capable hands, to find peace in their relationships with Christ and with their spouse, to continue their pursuit of a growing faith and to love their spouse with fresh enthusiasm. God wants every marriage to exude peace and love, and Winning Him Without Words empowers readers to create that environment in their homes and thrive as God works.

Watch their book video:



If you would like to read a sample chapter of Winning Him Without Words, go HERE.

My Review:

The best part about this book is that there is no condemning words by either author that as a Christian we should not get ourselves in the situation of marrying an unbeliever. They once again commit that any marriage can be Christ-based through our actions and not what we say. I for one, have seen this play out in my own marriage. Words can only go so far, it will be through our actions that beliefs will take root and begin to grow. Praying faithfully to God through your marriage will work wonders but make sure not to just pray that your spouse will come to know the Lord and change, but also that God will work on you as well and make your efforts blessed and glorify Him.

I received this book compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and think this would make a wonderful resource for a church ministry as well as couples that are currently married and are finding things a bit challenging. I rate this book a 5 out of 5 stars and pray that through the commitments of both spouses working together, any marriage can be saved.

Friday, June 17, 2011

A Reluctant Queen - Giveaway and Review



Imagine being considered one of the most beautiful women in the world. That some how God has blessed you with that gift. Now imagine that you are being asked to hide your birth right and venture into the King's Palace to see if he will chose you as his wife and next queen.

That is exactly the storyline behind the novel A Reluctant Queen by Joan Wolf, who beautifully enhances the Biblical story of Esther. Being able to hold true to the Biblical truths and still weave in likeability into her characters, she creates a romance story that will capture the hearts of its readers.

You can feel the true struggle in Esther's mind as she worries over being considered the next queen and wondering how she will be used by God to save her people. Her concerns are demonstrated when she begins to fall in love with the king and wonders just how will she find a way to tell him she is a Jew when he values truth and loyalty from his subjects and those who serve him.

I received A Reluctant Queen compliments of Litfuse Publicity and Thomas Nelson Publishers for my honest review. This one is beautifully crafted to take the reader more in depth to the true story of love and betrayal in the retelling of Esther. This one rates 5 out of 5 stars and I would highly recommend this one. I can't wait to see if more Biblical stories will follow in the same pattern. I personally feel in draws the reader in to wanting to read the Bible after becoming immersed in this novel. The reader must remember that this is a fictional story based on the Biblical one of Esther so the details contained within are there to enhance the story, not rewrite the actual one.

This book is available in paperback and eBook formats. For even more great information about the book, the author and where to purchase a copy of this book, please click on the link below:



To celebrate Joan Wolf’s debut Christian Fiction title, A Reluctant Queen, Joan and her publisher, Thomas Nelson, have teamed up to give away A Reluctant Queen prize package worth over $150!





One grand prize winner will receive:

* A brand new Latest Generation KINDLE with Wi-Fi and Pearl Screen

* A Reluctant Queen by Joan Wolf (for KINDLE)

To enter, just click one of the icons below. But, hurry, the contest ends on June 20th. Winner will be announced on June 21st during Joan’s A Reluctant Queen Book Club Party on Facebook (details below)! Hope to see you there – bring your friends!





Enter via E-mail Enter via FacebookEnter via Twitter


Join the fun on June 21st!

Joan will be wrapping up the blog tour and Kindle giveaway promotion during her A Reluctant Queen FACEBOOK party on her FB author page. During the party she'll announce the winner of the Kindle, host a book chat discussion, test your trivia skills (Is Esther's story in A Reluctant Queen fact or fiction?), and more. Don't miss this chance to meet the author and make some new friends!

Eyewall - Giveaway and Review



An eyewall, better known as nature's nightmare, is the engine room of a hurricane - a circular wall of massive clouds and brutal squalls. - Captain Karlyn Hill, aboard the Air Force Hurricane Hunter

What people expect of their weather forecasters is a simple yes or no to the type of weather that they call for. They want to know if it's going to rain or isn't it? Are we going to get a foot of snow or not? Is the hurricane going to hit here or there? No one is infallible. Nobody in the weather business is. The fact is, their never certain, which is why they think in terms of probabilities. That's the only honest way to forecast. But the public won't stand for it. They think of it as a cop out. - Dr. Nicholas Obermeyer, meterologist at the Natural Environment Center, formerly the Weather Channel.

Danger looms in the dark clouds over the small island community of St. Simons Island, just off the southern coast of Georgia. It's been more than a hundred years since a hurricane has impacted this area, so when Hurricane Janet is predicted as a category one hurricane, some of the residents are less than excited at the prospect of leaving over the Labor Day weekend. So when Trish and Alan Grant, hear the winds pick up and the rain begin to fall, she questions whether they should leave the island. Upon waking their children Lee and Sandy up for breakfast, they learn that Sandy has left with a boy she met on the internet. Not knowing anything about him, the family leaves in search of her while the hurricane grows near.

Until the Air Force Hurricane Hunter, can report back the precise readings from Hurricane Janet, the weather centers will only report what they can learn from Doppler radar and ground tracking systems. It isn't until they begin to reach the outer bands of Janet, that they will learn the ugly dark secrets she is keeping behind her black and cloudy storms clouds. What they will learn will put all of their lives in danger and in for the ride of their lives.



In the suspense thriller, Eyewall by H.W. "Buzz" Bernard, the reader will be left hanging on every word as they turn the pages faster and faster. You will NOT be able to put this one down until the very end. Taking The Perfect Storm and The Day After Tommorow, you will be left with the biggest hurricane to ever hit the eastern coast, riveling Katrina and Andrew as younger siblings. This is an edge of your seat, thrill ride that will keep you up long past your need for sleep just to see it through the end.

I received this book compliments of Pump Up Your Book Tours and Bell Bridge Books for my honest review and would highly recommend this book to anyone who loves great disaster stories with a twist. The characters are believable and true-to-life and you won't be disappointed. This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars and would LOVE to see this one come to life on the big screen. This one just acquired a permanent home in my library!

For more information about the author, the book and where to purchase a copy of the book, please click on the link below:

Eyewall by H.W. "Buzz" Bernard

  • Paperback: 246 pages
  • Publisher: Bell Bridge Books (April 15, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 161194001X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1611940015
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 6 x 0.8 inches
  • Price: $ 14.65
You can visit Eyewall's official Facebook page by clicking here.

Thanks to the generous folks at Bell Bridge books and Pump Up Your Books tours, they are providing a giveaway copy to one lucky follower of my blog. Here are your guidelines:

1. You must be a follower of my blog, Reviews From The Heart.

2. You must be a resident of the US or have a US shipping address. Please No P.O. Boxes.

3. I must have a way to contact you, so please be sure to include your email address with your comment. You can use the words (at) or (dot) instead of the symbols.

4. Leave me a comment and let me know why you would love to win a copy of this book. The giveaway will end on June 25th and I will notify the winner via email.



Thursday, June 16, 2011

Stories From A Lifetime


I remember writing stories from the time I was old enough to really appreciate it and even now it's something that calls to me on days from time to time. I still have those in a folder from when I was smart enough to begin saving them and even now, I savor and treasure all of my kids stories. I hope to pass them along when they are old enough to appreciate that I saved them.

Much like my own personal treasury of stories is another man's. That of Hugh Aaron. He's been writing them over the past thirty years, and he even wrote one of them sixty-six years ago while serving overseas in the Southwest Pacific during WWII. Like me, Hugh came across his folder of original manuscripts that cover a wide range of subjects and locales, including some from a child's point of view and even some containing adult themes. Some of the war stories, each concerning a different issue, and written at a different phase of his life, have identical settings. What I like most is how they vary so much from subject matter to subject matter. There are those dealing with business situations that speak about our economy and difficulties in maintaining good business practices, to my all time favorite even though it's the first one in the book, called An Unusual Day in "The Life of George Amen" (Scroll down to read an excerpt).

It's about what happens when someone faces the same thing day after day for so many years. Going to work, providing an income that will pay the bills and keep his family from going hungry. And then out of the blue, one day George Amen doesn't do the usual and in the end finds a very happy moment in his usual life. LOVED this one.

Because there is such a vast difference of short stories, you are bound to find one or more that will not only speak volumes to you as a reader but touch your heart like a true friend would. This is one you won't want to miss out on, and perfect for someone looking for a book that they can pick up and read a little at a time.

I received Stories From A Lifetime by Hugh Aaron compliments of Pump Up Your Book tours and Stones Point Press for my honest review and found a personal journal inside. It's like an undiscovered treasure of great writing just waiting to be unearthed and enjoyed, even talked about and shared. You will LOVE it! This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars for me and can't wait to see what else Mr. Aaron will be writing! This is available in paperback format.

  • Paperback: 298 pages
  • Publisher: Stones Point Press (September 27, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1882521129
  • ISBN-13: 978-1882521128
  • Product Dimensions: 8 x 5.2 x 0.8 inches
  • Price: $ 15.00


Here's even more great information about the book, the author and where to purchase a copy of this amazing collection of short stories. Simply click on the link below:


Book Summary:

Stories from a Lifetime carries readers through a widely diverse series of life’s peaks and valleys with poignant, clear-eyed vision and understanding that is only gradually gained across the course of a lifetime through endurance and honest appraisal of the emotional rollercoaster that we all ride.

These stories form a welcome, and increasingly rare, honest, grounded, and beautifully written collection that will touch nerves while sympathizing with what it means to be human.

Hugh Aaron delicately reveals the world through the innocent eyes of a young boy, through those of a soldier far from home during wartime, and those of a struggling businessman and faltering husband. He is unafraid to reveal panic beneath a fa├žade of success, the deep and hollow sadness that may exist in an outwardly happy marriage, the yearning we feel to make a break for freedom from the rat race, the unexpected emotional responses that shift lives far beyond the expected course of events.

Read the Excerpt!

AN UNUSUAL DAY IN THE LIFE OF GEORGE AMEN

George Amen awoke at his usual hour of 7:00 a.m.; had his usual breakfast of scrambled eggs, toast, and coffee; smoked his usual first cigarette of the day; kissed his children and wife good-bye; scanned the state of his lawn as he backed his car out of the garage; and joined the usual morning traffic on his way to work. But George Amen never arrived at his office.

In accordance per his usual habit, he drove to the factory in which he had his office, and at 8:25 a.m. approached the driveway to the parking lot. At 8:26 a.m. he passed the driveway to the parking lot, then passed the entrance to the factory itself, and, without so much as a glance, continued into the countryside. This would not be—it suddenly became clear to George Amen—a usual day.

George Amen had not been aware of his intention either at 7:00 a.m. when he awoke or at 8:25 a.m., one minute before he normally would have turned into the parking lot. He was not in a trance; he was not ill. He knew what he was doing the instant he broke his routine. Although he was not aware why, he knew he had to continue driving into the countryside. He had no destination in mind; he simply had to head out on the open road.

At 10:30 a.m. he returned to his home. The children were at school. His wife had washed the breakfast dishes, made the beds, and had planned to spend the afternoon downtown with a neighbor; she was just preparing to sit down with a cup of coffee and a home decorating magazine when she saw George’s car enter the garage. She did not complete filling her cup, but instead put down the pot of hot coffee on the wooden kitchen table and rushed to the back door.
Accustomed to George’s routine of being away from 8:00 a.m. until 5:30 p.m., she shouted to him in panic as he came up the walk.

“What’s wrong, George?”
George grinned and waved her back inside. “Nothing’s wrong.”
“Are you ill?” she asked as she examined his expression, which seemed quite normal.
“No, I’m fine. Nothing’s wrong, absolutely nothing.”
“Then you haven’t been fired or…”
“Don’t be silly. They wouldn’t be that generous.”
George Amen paused for a moment. He stood motionless in the center of the kitchen. His eyes widened and his forehead wrinkled upward. He felt a sensation of surprise.
“So that’s it,” he said.
“What do you mean?” his wife asked.
“I’m not sure.”
George Amen thought nothing was wrong, yet he sensed that everything was wrong. He assured his wife that he felt well, that his spirits were high. Perhaps a little too high, he thought to himself. He was aware of an inexplicable elation.

Author Bio:

Hugh Aaron, a native of Worcester, Massachusetts, received a Liberal Arts degree in the Humanities at The University of Chicago. For three years as a Seabee he served in the South Pacific during WWII. He was CEO of his own plastics manufacturing business for 20 years before selling it to write full time. Several of his short stories have been published in national magazines and 18 of his essays on business management have appeared in The Wall Street Journal. He is the author of Business Not as Usual: How to Win Managing a Company through Hard and Easy Times. Currently he’s writing and producing plays.

His latest book is a short story collection, Stories From A Lifetime.

You can visit his website at www.stonespointbooks.com


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Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Pompeii: City On Fire - Giveaway and Review



Gnaeus Nigidius Mauis. Just the name within the walled city of Pompeii is enough for any of it's citizens to cringe with fear. Being the duovir, or ruling politician of the city, he has gained his popularity not on the merits of good leadership, but through fear and intimidation of it's citizens. Those willing to pay a small fee will earn the protection from his guards, those that don't will find themselves bound within the prisons that lie underneath the city.

Quintus Portius Cato wants to make a fresh start in Pompeii making wine, some of the finest ever produced. After leaving a life of politics, he has come here in hopes of finding a wife and starting a business to support his family. However, when Mauis shows up unannounced at his shop, he makes his lustful desires known to Cato's sister Portia. Cato soon realizes that in order to make it here, he will either need to submit to the power of Mauis or become the new duovir in the upcoming election.

Ariella has been a survivor since the fall of Rome where she lost all of her family except for her brother Micah. Yet in a rush to leave the burning city, they become separated and Ariella finds herself a slave in more ways than one to her master, Valerius. She makes a valiant escape one night, cuts off her long hair and blends in with a troupe of gladiators heading to Pompeii. She believes that at least this way she can control her own destiny somewhat even if it means living her life disguised as a young boy.



In the latest novel by T.L. Higley, Pompeii: City on Fire, the historical novel is set among the backdrop of the infamous city of Pompeii before the mountain will explode. We get to see what life may have been like through the characters of Ariella, a slave/gladiator and Cato, a man of morals who has a destiny that God will guide him towards. How will their lives be joined together as the defeat the evils that run unchecked within the city walls controlled by Mauis and how will God unite them for His greater good.

I received this wonderful book compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and LOVED it. Being a huge fan of ancient history I was immediately drawn to the two paralleled lives of the Jewish slave and the powerful Roman. This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars and can't wait to read more of Higley's historical novel. This is my second, after reading Petra: City of Stone and thoroughly enjoyed that one as well.

Here's even more great information on this book, the author and where to get a first chapter sneak peek at this link:


Thanks to the generous folks at Christian Fiction Blog Alliance and B & H Publishing Group, I am offering a giveaway copy to one lucky follower of my blog. Here are the details to enter:

1. Be a follower of my blog Reviews From The Heart.

2. Like my Facebook page, Reviews From The Heart, where you will never miss out on another exciting giveaway or review.

3. Be a resident of the US and please No P.O. Boxes.

4. I must have a way to contact you if you are the lucky winner so please leave me your email address along with a comment as to why you'd love to win this giveaway. You can use the words (at) or (dot) instead of the symbols.

The giveaway will end on June 23rd and I will contact the winner via email.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

The Art of Saying Goodbye



Paisley Lamm's life will forever have a lingering legacy in the lives of the four women that lived on her street. Paisley is the proverbial life of any party, the perfect hostess, the beautiful wife that any man would love to have for his own and the friend who has the perfect thing to say or do to make your day so much more brighter simply by her presence in it.

Now the only lingering image is the white ribbons tied from every tree in the neighborhood. A reminder to Paisley each day she passes through the neighborhood that she is not alone. Paisley has been diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and is dying. In her final days, she will touch each of the women in a unique and lasting way as they each find a way to say goodbye to her and she does for them.

For Julianne, the nurse practitioner, whose gift of prophecy was the first to diagnose something was wrong with Paisley's liver. Now forever stuck with the guilt of not finding a way to make her better, she struggles with the gift she has and who she can share this with.

Andrea, is Paisley's closest friend. She is the one that will spend every single day with her and make sure that no matter what, she will not be alone. They have shared more secrets between them than anyone will ever know and have kept those between themselves, the way a true friend does.

Ginger, the spa salesperson that is now running the business that her father-in-law has left to them, can't seem to find enough thank you's to offer Paisley for providing a way to work and find herself and give her husband back his hopes and dreams.

Iona, the oldest of all of them and a widow who never remarried is the silent rock that holds them all together, dispensing wisdom and advice, as bluntly as an elderly lady can. She struggles with finding a sense of self that all along has been right in front of her.

In the latest novel The Art of Saying Goodbye by Ellyn Bache, the reader is joining an intimate circle of friends who have three months to share in the final moments of Paisley's life. They will be forever changed by not only her life but in the grace she continues to show even in her illness. You will be lost in feeling such a closeness that most women crave in their lives and in the friendship that never dies even when they are no longer with us.

I received The Art of Saying Goodbye compliments of TLC Book Tours for my honest review, and even though the storyline is sad, it's the love and warm that come from the many years these women have spent together, raising their families, and sharing stories, that makes you feel like you know every single one of them. This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars and shows you what real love and friendship looks like.

For more information about the book, the author, or where to get a copy of this amazing book, please click on the link below:

The Art of Saying Goodbye by Ellyn Bache

You can also visit Ellyn on her Facebook page by clicking here.


Monday, June 13, 2011

God and Stephen Hawking




When you read a title like that, if you're like me, you wonder, just who is Stephen Hawking?

Stephen Hawking has made a name for himself by being one of the greatest modern day physicists up there with Einstein, Newton and others. He has also made it a goal to discredit God for creation as much as he possibly can.

So many people are being lulled into the notion that if science can answer any question, it must be the absolute truth right? So whose design is it anyway?

In the mini book by John C. Lennox, God and Stephen Hawking, he takes the Christian viewpoint in taking on each of the questions posed by Mr. Hawking in his latest book, The Grand Design, co-authored with Leonard Mlodinow, which is climbing to the top of the best seller list. Here are the questions that book apparently addresses with answers from science experts, Dr. Hawking and Mr. Mlodinow:

How can we understand the world in which we find ourselves?

How does the universe behave?

Where did this all come from?

Did the universe need a Creator?

Stephen Hawking does not hide the claim that he is an atheist, and his premise for this book is it is his claim it is the laws of physics, not the will of God, that provide the real explanation as to how the universe came into being. The Big Bang he argues was the inevitable consequence of these laws: "because there is a law such as gravity, the universe can and will create itself from nothing."

To refute these claims Mr. Lennox explains it perfectly clear in my opinion, "the laws of physics can explain how a jet engine works, but not how it came to exist in the first place. It is self-evident that the laws of physics could not have create a jet engine on their own. That task also needed the intelligence, imagination, and scientific creativity of Sir Frank Whittle. Indeed, even the laws of physics plus Frank Whittle were not sufficient to produce a jet engine. There also needed to be some material that Whittle could use. Matter may be humble stuff, but laws can not create it. (pg. 37-38)

I received this book compliments of Litfuse Publicity for my honest review and loved the simplicity in which these arguments are logically explained. This is just the book I've been looking for when faced with the challenges from some who want scientific proof for God's existence. This is just the book I've been wanting for so long. Hands down a 5 out of 5 stars.

John C. Lennox



John C. Lennox is Fellow in Mathematics and the Philosophy of Science at the University of Oxford, and author of the bestselling God's Undertaker. He lectures on faith and science at the Oxford Centre for Christian Apologetics. He has lectured around the world, including in the United States for Ravi Zacharias; in Austria; and in the former Soviet Union.

For more information on this book, the author and where you can purchase a copy of this book, please click on the link below:

The Sweetest Thing

Anne "Perri" Singleton's world is defined by the security of family, the camaraderie of friends at an exclusive Atlanta girls' school, for an enviable social life. She isn't looking for new friends when Mary Dobbs Dillard arrives from Chicago. Besides, "Dobbs," the passionate and fiercely individualistic daughter of an itinerant minster, is her opposite in every way.

But just as the Great Depression collides disastrously with Perri's well-ordered life, friendship blossoms - a friendship that will be tested by jealousy, betrayal, and family secrets....

With her endearing characters and poignant storytelling, Atlanta native Elizabeth Musser vividly re-creates the charm of her beloved city amid the poverty and plenty that shaped the 1930's in the latest novel The Sweetest Thing.

I received the book The Sweetest Thing compliments of Christian Fiction Blog Alliance for my honest review and was transported back to the time of the Great Depression through the remarkable storytelling of Elizabeth Musser. It's hard to imagine just how difficult it was for some families to weather the storm of not knowing if things would right themselves once again when President Roosevelt took office. Whether banks would reopen again, whether their would be enough food to feed their families at night, and how some would get through a day.

I didn't realize how many people committed suicide even though that very same thing happened here in 2008 when our own financial upheaval occurred in the banking world. We get to share in the close friendship of Perri and Dobbs and see how each of them will help get them through this storm. Perri is the daughter of a wealthy family who doesn't seem concerned with the stock market fall out until it affects her father, while Dobbs comes from a poor family whose goal is to provide for a meal for her family at the end of the day. This one rates a 5 out of 5 stars!

Here's even more great information about the book, the author and even a first chapter glimpse.
This week, the
Christian Fiction Blog Alliance
is introducing
The Sweetest Thing
• Bethany House (June 1, 2011)
by
Elizabeth Musser




ABOUT THE AUTHOR:



Elizabeth Musser, an Atlanta native, studied English and French literature at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee. While at Vanderbilt, I had the opportunity to spend a semester in Aix-en-Provence,



France. During her Senior year at Vanderbilt, she attended a five-day missions conference for students and discovered an amazing thing: God had missionaries in France, and she felt God calling her there. After graduation, she spent eight months training for the mission field in Chicago, Illinois and then two years serving in a tiny Protestant church in Eastern France where she met her future husband.



Elizabeth lives in southern France with her husband and their two sons. She find her work as a mother, wife, author and missionary filled with challenges and chances to see God’s hand at work daily in her life. Inspiration for her novels come both from her experiences growing up in Atlanta as well as through the people she meets in her work in France. Many conversations within her novels are inspired from real-life conversations with skeptics and seekers alike.



Her acclaimed novel, The Swan House, was a Book Sense bestseller list in the Southeast and was selected as one of the top Christian books for 2001 by Amazon's editors. Searching for Eternity is her sixth novel.





ABOUT THE BOOK



Compelling Southern Novel Explores Atlanta Society in the 1930s.



The Singleton family’s fortunes seem unaffected by the Great Depression, and Perri—along with the other girls at Atlanta’s elite Washington Seminary—lives a life of tea dances with college boys and matinees at the cinema. When tragedy strikes, Perri is confronted with a world far different from the one she has always known.



At the insistence of her parents, Mary ‘Dobbs’ Dillard, the daughter of an itinerant preacher, is sent from inner-city Chicago to live with her aunt and attend Washington Seminary. Dobbs, passionate, fiercely individualistic and deeply religious, enters Washington Seminary as a bull in a china shop and shocks the girls with her frank talk about poverty and her stories of revival on the road. Her arrival intersects at the point of Perri’s ultimate crisis, and the tragedy forges an unlikely friendship.



The Sweetest Thing tells the story of two remarkable young women—opposites in every way—fighting for the same goal: surviving tumultuous change. Just as the Great Depression collides disastrously with Perri's well-ordered life, friendship blossoms--a friendship that will be tested by jealousy, betrayal, and family secrets...



If you would like to read the first chapter of The Sweetest Thing, go HERE.