Monday, September 21, 2020

The Christmas Swap By Melody Carlson

 

The Christmas Swap By Melody Carlson

All Emma Daley wants this holiday season is a white Christmas. But the young teacher and struggling musician sure can't find that in sunny Arizona. Luckily, there's someone living in a perfect mountain home in the Colorado Rockies looking to make a vacation trade this year.

Tyler Prescott is an in-demand songwriter and talented musician who put his own singing career on hold to write songs for celebrity acts to perform. When his mother convinces him to do a vacation trade for Christmas, he never imagined one of the houseguests would be so sweet--or so strikingly pretty. Naturally, he decides to stick around, and, to get better acquainted, he poses as the house's caretaker. But when Emma's friend Gillian discovers his true identity and sets her sights on him, things
get . . . messy.

Fan favorite Melody Carlson is back with another delightful Christmas tale to warm your heart on those cold winter evenings.

My Thoughts:
Eek! Squeal! If you love Christmas novels, this book is one to pick up TODAY! I love this novella! It was the perfect, fun read. The romance was great, the pace of the story was on point and I read it in one sitting! Get ready to hit the slopes and enjoy a little music along the way. This book is one not to miss! I give this book 5 stars! This was an awesome read and I cannot wait for Melody's next Christmas novella! 


Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women and children. That's a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a "storyteller." Her novels range from serious issues like schizophrenia (Finding Alice) to lighter topics like house-flipping (A Mile in My Flip-Flops) but most of the inspiration behind her fiction comes right out of real life. Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, TrueColors etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She's won a number of awards (including Romantic Time's Career Achievement Award, the Rita and the Gold Medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog. To find out more about Melody Carlson, visit her website at http://www.melodycarlson.com/



Sunday, September 20, 2020

Half the Battle By Jon Chasteen

 Half the Battle By Jon Chasteen

Do you ever feel the pressure to hide your struggles in order to look like a “good Christian”? The truth is, we all face battles and hurts in our lives. Scripture is full of God-fearing men and women who tried to cover up their problems. For Mary and Martha, the death of their brother, Lazarus, was the ultimate devastation. They put his body in a dark place and rolled a stone in front of it. But God knew where they buried their pain, and He knows where you bury yours too.

Jon Chasteen explores Old and New Testament examples of people whom God invited to begin the healing process by confronting their secret pain. Through this book with an included study guide, you will learn to:

  • Acknowledge the struggles you’ve been avoiding
  • Let go of shame and regret
  • Partner with God in your healing
  • Find freedom and lasting peace

God wants to visit the place of your pain, redeem your past, and set you free. Will you let Him?


My Thoughts:
Half the Battle is an encouraging read that I recommend you pick up today. This book gives the reader tools in how to heal from shame. The author recognizes that healing is a process and journey, one that should not be rushed, but rather the reader should take the invitation. This book is a great tool in helping people get free. I love freedom ministries and this book definitely has that flavor of thought behind it. If you are learning to break free from the past and partner with the truth of God's word, this book is for you! Grab a copy today, you won't regret it. This book is worth 5 stars to me! 



Dr. Jon Chasteen is president of The King’s University in Southlake, Texas. He and his wife, Michele, also serve as the lead pastors of Victory Church in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Jon’s greatest passion is to empower and equip the local church to live, move, and be in the fullness of Christ.

Tuesday, September 8, 2020

Jason Sautel, author of THE RESCUER

 

Jason Sautel, author of THE RESCUER

About The Rescuer: One Firefighter’s Story of Courage, Darkness, and the Relentless Love That Saved Him

Hardcover: 208 Pages

Publisher: Thomas Nelson (September 1, 2020)

He helped save people every day—but he had no idea how to save himself.

Jason Sautel had it all. Confident in his abilities and trusted by his fellow firefighters, he was making a name for himself on the streets of Oakland, California. His adrenaline-fueled job even helped him forget the pain of his childhood—until the day he looked into the eyes of a jumper on the Bay Bridge and came face to face with a darkness he knew would take him down as well.

In the following months, a series of traumatic emergency calls—some successful, others impossible-to-forget failures—drove Jason deeper into depression. Even as he continued his lifesaving work, he realized he could never rescue everyone, and he had no idea how to save himself.

In the end, Jason was forced to confront the truth: only the relentless power of love could pull him back from his own deadly fall. Action-packed, spiritually honest, and surprisingly romantic, The Rescuer transports readers inside the pulse-pounding world of firefighting and into the heart of a man who needed to be broken before he could finally be made whole.

My Thoughts:

The Rescuer is an incredible, inspirational story that is needed in a time like this. Jason does an amazing job of creating and inviting the reader into his career as a first responder. This book gives the reader insight to what our public defenders and hero's endure on a daily basis. While this book was very rewarding to read, the lifestyle of a servant comes with emotional heartache and redemption. This book is powerful and a great read. I think that those in the industry of public defending and service, can relate to this story. It is especially needed a in a time like this, where are public hero's need encouragement. I enjoyed this book and recommend it. You will learn a lot, including many responsibilities and duties firemen/women do on a daily basis. This book is a fascinating memoir and I highly recommend picking up a copy today! 

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About Jason Sautel

Jason Sautel spent much of his early adulthood as a decorated firefighter in one of the toughest firehouses in the country and today shares Christ-centered stories and lessons from his time there to his 600,000+ Facebook followers. He loves his wife of sixteen years, Kristie, his four two-legged children, his two four-legged children, and appreciates God’s gifts of donuts, surfing, and Maui.

Connect with Jason

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

Sunday, August 30, 2020

The Mockingbird's Song By Wanda Brunstetter

The Mockingbird's Song By Wanda Brunstetter 

Where Is the Hope in Grief for a Young Amish Widow?

Sylvia has been nearly paralyzed with grief and anxiety since the tragic death of her husband, father, and brother in a traffic accident. She tries to help in the family’s greenhouse while caring for her two young children, but she prefers not to have to deal with customers. Her mother’s own grief causes her to hover over her children and grandchildren, and Sylvia seeks a diversion. She takes up birdwatching and soon meets an Amish man who teaches her about local birds. But Sylvia’s mother doesn’t trust Dennis Weaver, and as the relationship sours, mysterious attacks on the greenhouse start up again.

My Thoughts:
The MockingBirds Song is the second book in the Amish Greenhouse Mystery series. I have read both books and could not wait to get my hands on this book to see what happened next. This book is written on how the women of an Amish community are dealing with the grief of loosing important men in their lives due to a buggy accident. For some of the family members, it is harder than others, but ultimately with faith and hope, they get through it. 

This series is a bit different than other ones by Wanda. She adds an element of mystery to each book and that keeps me interesting and wanting to solve the mystery, so the pages fly.  I really enjoyed this book and look forward to more from Wanda!


Wanda Brunstetter is an award-winning romance novelist who has led millions of readers to lose their heart in the Amish life. She is the author of almost 90 books with more than 10 million copies sold. Many of her books have landed on the top bestseller lists, including the New York Times, USA Today, Publisher's Weekly, CBA, ECPA, and CBD. Wanda is considered one of the founders of the Amish fiction genre, and her work has been covered by national publications, including Time Magazine and USA Today.

Wanda's fascination with the Amish culture developed when she met her husband, Richard, who grew up in a Mennonite church, and whose family has a Pennsylvania Dutch heritage. Meeting her new Mennonite sister-in-laws caused Wanda to yearn for the simpler life. In their travels, she and her husband have become close friends with many Amish people across America. Wanda's desire to explore their culture increased when she discovered that her great-great grandparents were part of the Anabaptist faith.

All of Wanda's novels are based on personal research intended to accurately portray the Amish way of life. Many of her books are well-read and trusted by the Amish, who credit her for giving readers a deeper understanding of the people and their customs.

Wanda's primary attraction to the Amish is their desire to live a devout Christian life that strives to honor God, work hard, and maintain close family ties. Whenever she visits her Amish friends, Wanda finds herself drawn to their peaceful lifestyle, sincerity, and close family ties, which is in stark contrast to the chaos and busyness that plagues so many modern "Englishers." Time and time again, Wanda loses her heart in the Amish life, and she hopes her readers will, too. For more information, visit: www.WandaBrunstetter.com


Friday, August 21, 2020

Well, Girl: An Inside-Out Journey to Wellness by Jami Amerine

Well, Girl: An Inside-Out Journey to Wellness

If you’re skinny, fat, short, tall, or somewhere in between. . .
If you’ve ever thought that losing weight would lead to happiness. . .
If you’ve ever avoided a mirror because you didn’t want to see your reflection. . .
If you’ve found Jesus or you’re still searching. . .

Well, Girl, You’ve Come to the Right Place.
***

You’ll find a sassy, funny, authentic, and encouraging friend in master word weaver Jami Amerine, as she comes alongside you to share God’s overwhelming grace and patience in an inside-out journey to wellness. She’ll introduce you to a heavenly Father who adores you, right where you are. And she’ll let you have a peek into the insane ride of her life that led her to complete freedom after years of hating herself—while she was completely and utterly adored by Jesus.
This transformational read will set you free. Hilarious, raw, and somehow poetic, Well, Girl offers scriptural truths, honest and thought-provoking ideas about wellness, and an in-depth look at a life free from culture’s lies—with increased self-worth, better overall health, and more confidence in your physical appearance.


My Thoughts:
This book is incredible! Please pick up a copy today and don't delay. I was on a weight loss journey about 10 years ago, where I lost close to 100lbs and while the journey has been incredible, it's more about the person on the inside that shines through. THIS book is about a journey, not a weight loss program or diet plan. This is one that I have read two times. I have taken each chapter, word by word. Her words will bring a fresh breath on your journey as you learn to love yourself more and follow Jesus. I cannot urge you enough to pick up a copy of this book today! It has been the book of the summer for me. 

About Jami:


Hello! My name is Jami Amerine. I am wife of Justin, mom to Maggie, John (Marine-baby), Luke, Sophie, Sam & Charlie (the vandals.) I love words, chocolate, coffee, painting and Real Jesus. Justin and I have been married for 25 years... the original 4 babies are our biological children and then we started all over with foster care and adoption adding the new batch. We recently moved from our ranch in West Texas to the Houston area just in time for the launch of my first book with Harvest House, Stolen Jesus: An Unconventional Search for the Real Savior.

Other than that! Life is all, bills, babies, casseroles, cardio, a little yoga, blog posts, laundry, take out Chinese, Beastie Boys, homework, Seinfeld, laughter, tears, spilled milk, cheezits, Jesus, a walk around the block and another trip to Walmart. I love connecting with my readers and hearing all the ways our lives are similar... and completely different.

I actually wasn't a writer so I come from a place of wonder as I navigate all this insanity. In August of 2015, I had an unknown little mommy blog, I averaged about 69 views a month. In September of 2015 I put up a blog post, from my phone called An Open Letter to My Children You're Not That Great.... and that month I had 690,000 views, the next month I had a million, an agent, and a couple months later I had a two-book deal with Harvest House, so you just never know! But it has been such a fun ride. I have never had as much fun as getting to know the people that frequent my blog and social media sites.

I look forward to connecting with you too! Grace, love, and Real Jesus, Jami Amerine


Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Love and a Little White Lie By Tammy Gray

Love and a Little White Lie By Tammy Gray

January Sanders grew up believing karma was more reliable than an imaginary higher power, but after suffering her worst heartbreak in 29 years, she's open to just about anything, including taking a temporary position at her aunt's church. Keeping her lack of faith a secret, January is determined to use her photographic memory to help Grace Community's overworked staff, all while scraping herself off rock bottom.

What she doesn't count on is meeting the church's handsome and charming guitarist, who not only is a strong believer, but has also dedicated his life to Christian music. It's a match set for disaster, and yet January has no ability to stay away, even if it means pretending to have faith in a God she doesn't believe in.

Only this time, keeping secrets isn't as easy as she thought it would be. Especially when she's constantly running into her aunt's landscape architect, who seems to know everything about her past and present sins and makes no apologies about pushing her to deal with feelings she'd rather keep buried.

Torn between two worlds incapable of coexisting, can January find the healing that's eluded her or will her resistance to the truth ruin any chance of happiness?

My Thoughts:

Love and a Little White Lie is my first read by Tammy Gray and it won't be my last. This books is a quick and incredible read. I was surprised at how I could not wait, as I finished the book in one sitting. I ADORE January and can relate to her character so much, which is probably why I enjoyed this book. I also adored her aunt as well and wish we all had someone like her in our life.. Don't forget Dillon too.. This book is also setting us up for another one in the future, which I can't wait to read. Between humor, sarcasm and threads of redemption. This story is one not to be missed. 

About the Author:

Tammy L. Gray lives in the Dallas area with her family, and they love all things Texas, even the erratic weather patterns. Her nine modern and true-to-life contemporary romances include 2017 RITA award winning, My Hope Next Door, and show her unending quest to write high quality, culturally relevant stories with relatable and flawed characters.

When not taxiing her three kids to various school and sporting events, Tammy can be spotted crunching numbers as the financial administrator at her hometown church. Writing has given her a platform to combine her passion with her ministry all while sharing the messy, yet remarkable journey that is a faith-filled life.


Monday, August 10, 2020

Loving Well in a Broken World: Discover the Hidden Power of Empathy by Lauren Casper

Loving Well in a Broken World: Discover the Hidden Power of Empathy by 


About:
How can we love our neighbors amid so much division and hurt?
Loving your neighbor as yourself would be easy if your neighbors were all people you understood, people you agreed with, people like you. But what about playground bullies, colleagues, refugees, online adversaries? They're all our neighbors, and Jesus said to love them. Every one. But how?

Lauren Casper believes the key is the lost art of empathy, stepping into other people’s shoes and asking what if?what if it were my child? What if it were me? Casper helps us discover how to identify our blind spots and tune our hearts to the stories around us;seek and extend forgiveness with grace and humility; and engage in diverse and meaningful relationships. 

Following these steps will enable us to connect in simple but life-altering ways, to respond to conflict with grace, bring about needed change, and shine God’s unconditional love into a dark world.

Purchase Links

Amazon | Barnes & Noble | Thomas Nelson

Connect with Lauren

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

My Thoughts:
"Loving Well in a Broken World" by Lauren Casper emphasizes compassion and empathy as the keys to loving people well in a world that is desperate for it. Just turn on the news for two seconds, and you will see that people are starved for compassion. This book is the perfect "how to" in our current world. 

Lauren brings the reader into having more compassion for those who we may not understand. Now more than ever, I think the human race has forgotten to take a step back and try to understand where others are coming from that have varying opinions. 

This book is an easy read, but offers a difficult heart position change if you're not following compassion and empathy. For Christians, I think this book offers for us to take a step back and learn that we are to bring the light where we go, not look like the rest of the world. I enjoyed this book and felt that the author and I would sit down over a cup of coffee and discuss the issues that our world faces. This is a great, easy and needed read. I highly recommend reading this book. 



About the Author:

Lauren Casper is a writer, speaker, and amateur baker. She is the founder of the popular blog laurencasper.com and has had numerous articles syndicated by The Huffington Post, The TODAY Show, Yahoo! News, and several other publications. Lauren and her husband, John, have two beautiful children and one fluffy dog. They make their home in the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia.


Friday, August 7, 2020

A Dazzle of Diamonds (Georgia Coast Romance #3) by Liz Johnson

A Dazzle of Diamonds (Georgia Coast Romance #3)

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About:
Penelope Hunter loves her job as the events manager at one of Savannah's premier historic venues--until her ex-fiancé walks into her office with his new bride-to-be. To make matters worse, a scheming social matriarch is intent on seeing Penelope fired, especially if she insists on being seen with Tucker Westbrook.

Since returning from serving two tours in the Middle East, Tucker has built a thriving security company. His work is nearly as stabilizing as his friendship with Penelope, who has been by his side since childhood. But when the lone candidate for county sheriff goads him, Tucker loses his cool and ends up on the ballot--and on the receiving end of a smear campaign claiming the Westbrooks were traitors to the South.

To clear his name, Tucker and Penelope must join forces to find the truth behind a 150-year-old lost treasure. But the more time they spend together, the closer she comes to losing her job--and falling helplessly in love.

My Thoughts:

A Dazzle of Diamonds is such a beautiful story. The author is incredible at weaving in a historical story with a modern one as well. The characters are so incredible and the romance was spot on. This book brings out the perfect balance between adventure, mystery and love. I had been looking for the perfect beach book and this was the read I had been hoping for. 

I have read A Sparkle of Silver and A Glitter of Gold, which are  the first two books in the Georgia Coast series and they were great books, but  A Dazzle of Diamonds was my favorite. Something about the mystery and adventure with Tucker and Penelope was exactly what I needed. 

If you are looking for a quick, fun and light read, this is your book. Author, Liz Johnson is one not to miss. Her books are incredible and the perfect summer read. I highly recommend this book and the rest of the Georgia Coast Series.

About the Author:
By day Liz Johnson works in marketing. She finds time to write late at night and is a Christy Award finalist and a two-time ACFW Carol Award finalist. Liz makes her home in Phoenix, Arizona where she enjoys theater, exploring local history, and doting on her nieces and nephews. She loves stories of true love with happy endings. Find out more about Liz at www.LizJohnsonBooks.com.


Wednesday, July 22, 2020

Say Yes to What’s Next: How to Age with Elegance and Class While Never Losing Your Beauty and Sass! by Lori Allen


Say Yes to What’s Next: How to Age with Elegance and Class While Never Losing Your Beauty and Sass!

by 
From the star of  Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta , now filming its eleventh season for TLC, comes a book and a life-makeover movement for women approaching fifty and beyond.
Move over, girlfriend, Lori Allen is here to help you say yes to what’s next! Star of Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta, Lori Allen uses her confidence, wisdom, and signature humor not only to help young brides on their most important day ever but also to model to them and their mothers how to live out the coming years as the best of their lives.

Tuesday, July 14, 2020

The Woman in the Green Dress by Tea Cooper

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by 
A cursed opal, a gnarled family tree, and a sinister woman in a green dress emerge in the aftermath of World War I.
After a whirlwind romance, London teashop waitress Fleur Richards can’t wait for her new husband, Hugh, to return from the Great War. But when word of his death arrives on Armistice Day, Fleur learns he has left her a sizable family fortune. Refusing to accept the inheritance, she heads to his beloved home country of Australia in search of the relatives who deserve it more.

Thursday, July 9, 2020

Swimming For Freedom By Tera Bradham

Swimming For Freedom By Tera Bradham

Tera Bradham was born to prove people wrong. The fastest swimmer her age in the United States by age ten, many believed ''Tera the Terror'' was destined for the Olympics.

Her fiercely competitive spirit and unmatched intensity knew no limits until Tera suffered a sudden, devastating shoulder injury that derailed her promising career. Although she trusted in God, she also wrestled with doubts of his goodness throughout subsequent years of misdiagnoses, chronic pain, and crippling disappointment. Her injury finally forced her to fully surrender to God.

Then her miracle came, or so she thought. Her shoulder was successfully reconstructed, and after two more years of grueling recovery, Tera found the courage to swim again and pursue her dreams with renewed faith. 

Swimming for Freedom tells the story of Tera's unconventional comeback and shows that through God, all things are possible. What started as an Olympic dream ended in her true miracle: the freedom of a life in Christ. Tera's story will inspire you to rise up, dream again, and fight for his calling on your life.


My Thoughts:
Swimming for Freedom, by Tera Bradham  is a positive story, that with God all things are possible. I loved this book and could not put it down. It was such an inspiration to read, especially during a difficult time in our history. 
I finally felt like I was reading some good news for a change. This book inspired me personally to fight for what God has called me to do. I felt very challenged by this book and was just in awe of Tera's faith. This book had me in tears, but also had me cheering for Tera. Lots of mixed emotions when reading Swimming for Freedom, but in a great way! 

This book is for everyone, you don't have to be an avid lover of swimming. I pray this book gets great media attention, but the author is incredible! I loved every second of this book. 


About the Author:


Tera Bradham began her journey as a swimmer, where God used the sport and an undiagnosed injury to solidify her identity in Him. Her story of overcoming pain and depression through a miraculous God has inspired thousands. Tera's heart cry is to help those in physical pain live in miraculous victory over adversity. In addition, she is consumed with a desire to propel our generation to chase God-sized dreams. Her journey has led her to speak at events across the world as an inspirational speaker with a message of empowerment and purpose. She writes, coaches, and teaches from her home in Montana.

Tuesday, July 7, 2020

Dream Big: Know What You Want, Why You Want It, and What You’re Going to Do About It by Bob Goff


DREAM BIG

About Dream Big: Know What You Want, Why You Want It, and What You’re Going to Do About It

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Thomas Nelson (June 23, 2020)
From New York Times bestselling author Bob Goff, the creator of the popular Dream Big conferences, a wildly inspiring yet utterly practical blueprint for helping readers find and reach their biggest dreams.
Bob Goff is on a mission to shake people into the version of their lives they dreamt about before someone told them it was impossible or incorrect. He wants people to reconnect with the seat of their passion and their person. He wants them to dream big.
In this revelatory new book, Goff takes readers on a life-proven journey to rediscover their dreams and turn them into reality. Based on his popular Dream Big workshop, Bob draws on a lifetime of living and dreaming large to help guide readers to reaching their larger-than-life dreams. In Dream Big he shows us how to:
  • learn to define clearly your dreams for yourself,
  • identify the obstacles holding you back,
  • come up with a specific plan for reaching goals, and
  • develop the tools that will help you act on the plan.
Dream Big is the only book you need to uncover the wild and exciting dream for your life you’ve hidden from yourself–and help you take the steps necessary to achieve it.

My Thoughts:
Bob Goff fans, go to Amazon right now and order this book. You won't be disappointed at all. This book is fantastic! This book has changed how I view my faith and walking with the Lord.
Most people who follow Jesus daily do not like to be confronted with the uncomfortable, but that is the crux of following Jesus. He doesn't call us to be comfortable, but he calls us to experience a life fully dependent on him. 
While reading Dream Big, I was inspired by Bob to just do that. It will literally encourage you to go full force into something that is messy, frustrating and exciting all in one. I was very encouraged by this book and love how Bob talked about with every book he has written, he wrote a 1000 words a day. I love his advice in finishing projects like this. Additionally, this book continued to spark and challenge my view on the church today and how it is bigger than just a building. The church is its people. We need to stop making it about events and start making the church about glorifying the Lord, not ourselves. This book was very eyeopening. 
Overall, this book was encouraging, inspiring and hard because it challenged my thinking, which I LOVE! This book will help you live on the dream that God has put inside of you. Grab your copy today, you will be sad to have missed it. 

Purchase Links

Amazon | Books-A-Million | Barnes & Noble

About Bob Goff

Bob Goff is the author of the New York Times bestselling Love Does and Everybody, Always as well as the bestselling Love Does for Kids. He is the Honorary Consul to the Republic of Uganda, an attorney, and the founder of Love Does—a nonprofit human rights organization operating in Uganda, India, Nepal, Iraq, and Somalia. He’s a lover of balloons, cake pops, and helping people pursue their big dreams. Bob’s greatest ambitions in life are to love others, do stuff, and, most importantly, to hold hands with his wife, Sweet Maria Goff, and spend time with their amazing kids.

Connect with Bob

Website | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram