The Prophetess by Jill Eileen Smith Review

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Plot According to Goodreads: Outspoken and fearless, Deborah has faith in God but struggles to see the potential her own life holds. As an Israelite woman, she’ll marry, have a family, and seek to teach her children about Adonai–and those tasks seem to be more than enough to occupy her time. But God has another plan for her. Israel has been under the near constant terror of Canaan’s armies for twenty years, and now God has called Deborah to deliver her people from this oppression. Will her family understand? Will her people even believe God’s calling on her life? And can the menace of Canaan be stopped?

My Thoughts: This book gave me great insight into what life was like, particularly for women in the times of the Old Testament. I’ve read the stories in the Bible but didn’t reflect on how difficult and scary life was for the Israelites who spent their lives being terrorized. This book focuses on Deborah, who is in the book of Judges. She judged people by explaining the law to them and solving disputes according to the law, as well as received visions of prophecy from God.

I liked Deborah’s character, she was strong and assertive, which I imagine was a rare trait in women at that time. I also liked that she was respected by men and women in the city. The story takes place at a time when the Canaanites were terrorizing Israel and going into towns and kidnapping and raping the women as well as killing the men. A war was brewing and Deborah was waiting on the Lord’s instruction of what to do.

There were a lot of subplots to the story and I found that I enjoyed the subplots a bit more than the main story. Towards the end, during the battle scenes, I found myself getting a little bit bored as I don’t usually enjoy battle scenes. I realize that these scenes were very necessary to the story but I didn’t find them entertaining.

Overall, it was a very interesting story and I would definitely pick up another book by this author.

My Rating: 4 stars

I received this book from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group, in exchange for an honest review.

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The Quality of Silence by Rosamund Lupton Review

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Plot According to GoodreadsOn 24th November Yasmin and her deaf daughter Ruby arrived in Alaska.

Within hours they were driving alone across a frozen wilderness
Where nothing grows
Where no one lives
Where tears freeze
And night will last for another 54 days.

They are looking for Ruby’s father.
Traveling deeper into a silent land.
They still cannot find him.

And someone is watching them in the dark.

My Thoughts: With the temperature here in Pennsylvania averaging around 5 degrees the past few days, I thought it would be appropriate to pick up a wintry read. This really fit the bill. This book is very atmospheric, you feel as if you are riding in the truck with Yasmin and Ruby across the icy roads of bitter cold Alaska. I flew through the book as the pacing was perfect. The suspense builds slowly and, although not extremely surprising, it had a satisfying ending.

The setting was perfect and caused me to Google the places in the book, which led me to watch some episodes of Ice Road Truckers, as it features some of the places described in the book (the Dalton Highway, Coldfoot, and Deadhorse).

My main issue was the main character, Yasmin. As a mother, I was appalled at the danger she put her daughter in, even with the warnings of many people. There were several times that I was extremely frustrated with the choices that she made. I also felt that the author allowed her personal beliefs in regards to a certain issue to seep into the book a bit too much for my taste.

I definitely recommend this story to anyone who loves suspense and is in the mood for a chilly read.

My rating: 4.5 stars

I received this book from Blogging for Books in exchange for an honest review.

 

Risen by Angela Hunt Review

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Plot According to Goodreads: A Powerful Novelization from Bestselling Author Angela Hunt. Epic in scope, yet deeply personal, this novelization offers a unique perspective on the story of the resurrection. Roman Tribune Clavius is assigned by Pilate to keep the radical followers of the recently executed Yeshua from stealing the body and inciting revolution. When the body goes missing despite his precautions, Clavius must hunt it down.
His investigation leads him from the halls of Herod Antipas to the Garden of Gethsemane and brings him in touch with believer and doubter alike. But as the body still remains missing, Clavius commits to a quest for the truth–and answers that will not only shake his life but echo throughout all of history.

My Thoughts: I am very familiar with the story of the resurrection of Christ but this book made the people in the story seem more real. The story follows Clavius, a Roman Soldier charged by Pontius Pilate with locating the missing body before the Emperor arrives in Jerusalem.

Fast paced and vividly described, the story came to life and was highly enjoyable. The author took liberties with the story, as it is historical fiction, but I imagine that many of the scenarios in the story were fairly accurate. The Romans would have been very frustrated and panicking over what happened to this man’s body…the man who many were calling the Messiah. I really loved the story, and I could see myself revisiting it yearly, as Easter approaches.

My Rating: 5 Stars!

I received this book from Bethany House Publishers in exchange for an honest review.

 

 

Fast Food Maniac by Jon Hein Review

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Goodreads Synopsis: Jon Hein is the ultimate fast food maniac, and in this book he draws on his extensive knowledge of, and love for, both nationwide chains and regional gems, from McDonald’s and KFC to In-N-Out Burger and Carvel. He digs into their origin stories; reveals secret menu items; includes best lists for everything from fried chicken and shakes to connoisseur concerns such as straws and biscuits; takes a nostalgic look back at the best giveaways, slogans, and uniforms; and even provides a battle-tested drive-thru strategy. With behind-the-counter looks at places like the Dunkin’ Donuts headquarters and Nathan’s original hot dog stand, Fast Food Maniac is the definitive, cross-country guide to some of America’s best-loved guilty pleasures.

 

My Thoughts: I was pleasantly surprised to find a book in the year 2016 that is about fast food but looks at it in a positive way. It’s no secret that fast food is not nutritious or healthy and can be very detrimental if consumed in large quantities, but it tastes great and can be very convenient. This book was a lot of fun to read as it shares the origins of the popular national fast food chains as well as some regional chains. There are also some secret menu items that are revealed that I might try to order in the future (Even with working at Burger King in college, I was unaware that you could get “frings” a combo of fries and onion rings.

The photographs in the book were a nice touch, but I would have liked them to have been in color. Overall, this was a fun, quick to read book that made me very hungry for fast food 😉

I received this book from Blogging For Books in exchange for an honest review.