Faith Hope and Clarity by Carol Margaret Tetlow Review

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Synopsis: Few people realise that Faith Faber, seemingly an accomplished doctor is really a shy and insecure person. Her lack of confidence is not helped by the fact that she lives with her critical and overbearing mother, who has never come to terms with her own divorce and who does not approve of Faith’s engagement to the gregarious Jonty.

Faith is delighted to be offered a post at Teviotdale medical centre, one of the partners is on sick leave and soon she meets Pollyanna Smith, a hugely overweight young woman who yearns to be slim, something Faith can sympathise with as she herself has had a constant battle with food for most of her life. But nothing they try seems to help…. well, not Pollyanna anyway.

Will the course of love run smoothly? Will Faith accept who she really is? While her relationship explodes and she is faced with one of the biggest and most difficult diagnoses of her life, Faith discovers who her real friends are makes a huge decision of her own.

My Thoughts: This book was an enjoyable story that follows Faith, a doctor, who has many issues…a struggle with food, an unhealthy relationship, and a difficult mother. I really enjoyed reading about Faith, who presents herself as a respected doctor, but behind closed doors has many struggles that people wouldn’t expect. I had a love-hate relationship with Faith…there were many times that I just wanted to shake her and tell her to wise up, but I also related to her in many ways.

The book is 251 pages but it took me a long time to get through…there was something about the pacing that made it feel a bit slow.

Overall, I really enjoyed the story and the characters and would definitely read more by this author.

My Rating: 3.5 stars

I received this book from the author to review. All opinions are my own.

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Vanishing Point by Lisa Harris Review

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Synopsis: During Garrett Addison’s first week on the job as a criminal investigator for the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, his team is called out to a murder scene of a young girl. She’s the third victim in a string of disappearances with one thing in common–a Polaroid photo of each victim left behind at the crime scene.

The FBI is pulled into the case to help, and Garrett finds himself working with Special Agent Jordan Lambert, the woman he once loved. When yet another girl dies–number six–Garrett blames himself and believes he doesn’t have what it takes to be an agent. What he’ll discover is that, while he may be done with the killer, the killer is not done with him–or Jordan.

Bestselling and award-winning author Lisa Harris unveils an unforgettable story of a case that has haunted the public and law enforcement for more than a decade. Fans of the Nikki Boyd Files will thrill to finally discover what actually happened to Nikki’s sister, Sarah. New readers will become instant fans after devouring this chilling tale.

My Thoughts: This is book 4 in the Nikki Boyd Files Series but it definitely works as a standalone. This story was gripping from beginning to the end. It is a clean police-procedural that follows Garrett and Jordan, who are working tirelessly over a period of many years to track down a serial killer who is targeting young girls.

Garrett and Jordan were great characters…both smart but not robotic or heartless, they gave the reader a glimpse of the emotional toll that one goes through when searching for a murderer. Their relationship was also sweet, although frustrating at times.

Lisa Harris is very gifted as an author and definitely has a way with words. It was always easy for me to get lost in the story and the pacing was fast.

There are some sad moments but I appreciated that the age-old question of “why does God allow bad things to happen to people?” is addressed, and addressed well.

Overall, this was a great thrill-ride. I was never bored and would definitely pick up another book from this author!

My Rating: 4 stars

I received this book from Baker Publishing Group to review. All opinions are my own.

Rondi Bauer Olson’s ‘All Things Now Living’ Blog Tour and Kindle Fire Giveaway

About the book:
 

Her whole life Amy has been taught the people of New Lithisle deserve to die, but when she falls for Daniel, she determines to save him.
Sixteen-year-old Amy doesn’t like anything to die, she won’t even eat the goats or chickens her mama has butchered every fall, but she can’t let herself pity the inhabitants of New Lithisle. In a few short months the dome they built to isolate themselves from the deadly pandemic is predicted to collapse, but her whole life Amy has been taught it’s God’s will they die. They traded their souls for immunity to the swine flu virus, brought God’s curse upon themselves by adding pig genes to their own.
Then, while on a scavenging trip with her father, Amy is accidentally trapped in New Lithisle. At first her only goal is to escape, but when she meets Daniel, a New Lithisle boy, she begins to question how less-than-human the people of New Lithisle are.
Amy’s feelings grow even more conflicted when she learns she didn’t end up in New Lithisle by mistake. Her father is secretly a sympathizer, and was trying to prevent the coming destruction.
Now time is running short and Amy has to decide if she will bring the computer program her father wrote to his contact or save herself. Installing the program could prevent the dome’s collapse, but if Amy doesn’t find her father’s contact in time, she’ll die, along with everyone else.
About the author:

Rondi Bauer Olson is a reader and writer from Michigan’s Upper Peninsula, where she lives on a hobby farm with her husband, Kurt. She has four grown children, works as a nurse, and also owns a gift shop within view of beautiful Lake Superior.
Find out more about Rondi at http://rondibauerolson.weebly.com.
My Thoughts: I was very excited to pick up this book but overall, it wasn’t the book for me. The plot was very interesting and unique…a quarantined society that dabble in genetic alterations and a girl from the outside, given the task to save them from impending destruction and death. Unfortunately, the story was not described in a way that made it easy to understand…the world building could have been better and I was often confused about the history of this society and how they got to the present situation.
I also found the main character Amy to be very unlikeable. She was so invested in her love interest at times that she seemed to forget the gravity of the situation that she was in. The insta-love was very hard for me to read. I never like romance in books so it may  be just me, but the romance was so instantaneous and unrealistic and very immature. I think the fact that the characters were teenagers added to my dislike of the romance as they were moving very fast for their ages.
On the plus side, the cover of this book is gorgeous and the plot is very unique. I think some people would definitely enjoy the story. I just found it to be too heavy on the romance and a bit too light on the descriptions.
My Rating: 2 stars
I received this book from Litfuse Publicity Group to review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Stay up all night reading this thrilling new book from Rondi and enter to win a Kindle Fire!

One grand prize winner will receive:

  • A copy of All Things Now Living
  • A Kindle Fire

Enter today by clicking the icon below, but hurry! The giveaway ends on December 14. The winner will be announced December 15 on the Litfuse blog.

 

Hinds’ Feet on High Places. An Engaging Visual Journey by Hannah Hurnard Review

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Synopsis: Journey with Much-Afraid to new heights of love, joy, and victory!
For the first time, this beloved Christian allegory is a mixed-media special edition complete with charming watercolor paintings, antique tinted photography, meditative hand-lettered Scripture, journaling and doodling space, and designs to color. As you read and connect with the story of Much-Afraid and her trials, the pages of this book become a canvas on which to chronicle your own story, struggles, and personal triumphs.

Hinds’ Feet on High Places, with more than 2,000,000 copies sold, is a story of endurance, persistence, and reliance on God. This book has inspired millions of people to become sure-footed in their faith even when facing the rockiest of life’s terrain. The story of Much-Afraid is based on Psalm 18:33: “He makes me as surefooted as a deer, enabling me to stand on mountain heights.”

The complete Hinds’ Feet story is accented by 80 full-color paintings, photography, and hand-lettered Scripture.

My Thoughts: I adored this book. The story of Much-Afraid is one that is well known to many but the artwork that is accompanies the story in this book makes the story even more beautiful. This book is gorgeous and would make an amazing book for any Christian.

The story is one that I read years ago but revisiting it with the added illustrations and photographs made it a very fun and touching reading experience.

Hannah Hurnard illustrates God’s love and tenderness towards us in a beautiful way, showing that He’s always there and trustworthy. This story stretched me and challenged me. I was so thankful to get this copy as I see myself revisiting the story often.

I highly recommend this book, it is a beautiful story.

My Rating: 5 stars

I received this book from Tyndale House Publishers to review.

Dangerous Illusions by Irene Hannon Review

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Synopsis: Trish Bailey is on overload trying to deal with a demanding job, an ailing mother, and a healing heart. When a series of unsettling memory lapses leads to a tragic death–and puts Trish under police scrutiny–her world is once again thrown into turmoil.

Detective Colin Flynn isn’t certain what to think of the facts he uncovers during his investigation. Did Trish simply make a terrible mistake or is there more to the case than meets the eye? As he searches for answers, disturbing information begins to emerge–and if the forces at work are as evil as he suspects, the situation isn’t just dangerous . . . it’s deadly.

Bestselling and award-winning author Irene Hannon captures readers with a mind-bending story that will have them doubling back to retrace their steps–and figure out what they missed!

My Thoughts: This story was just okay for me. The plot was interesting but I found it kind of predictable. I also felt like it was too heavy on the romance and a bit too light on the suspense.

The romance, although cute, was extremely rushed and felt very forced. I’m not a fan of romance in books so this is never an aspect that I enjoy in stories.

I did find the twist to be clever but I predicted it far before it had been revealed. The mystery didn’t have enough pizzazz for me to get invested in the story or the characters.

Overall, I found this story to be worth reading but I don’t see myself continuing with the series.

My Rating: 2.5 stars

I received this book from Baker Publishing Group to review.

Brave Girls Confidential Review

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Synopsis: Join Brave Girls Faith, Hope, Glory, Gracie, and Honor as they discover how much they are loved and they learn what it means to live godly lives in their homes, schools, and communities.

Faith, Hope, Glory, Gracie, and Honor are five regular girls with regular lives. They have frustrating siblings and friends who fight sometimes, even though they love each other a lot. They have strong subjects in school, but they have struggles too. They love Jesus, and sometimes they have questions about Him. They’re just like you!

Brave Girls Confidential is a collection of stories meant to encourage and inspire. Through tales of what it means to be brave, strong, and faithful in everyday life, the Brave Girls show young readers how exciting faith can be. With engaging stories, strengthening scriptures, and takeaway discussion points to encourage meaningful conversations, Tommy Nelson’s Brave Girls Confidential has something for every girl who longs to live brave.

The great content and beautiful full-color design make Tommy Nelson’s Brave Girls Confidential wonderful gift for any young girl.

My Thoughts: There are so many things to love about this book. It has a very inviting cover with sweet illustrations. The characters are delightful, each one different with their own unique personality and challenge to face.

Broken down into several stories, it follows the 5 “Brave Girls”, a group of friends who go to church together and meet together for a small group. Each story highlights a challenge the girl is facing (rejection, fear, divorce, fitting in, etc) with a prayer and Bible verse that relates to the story.

Each character is different and the reader should be able to relate to one or more of the girls in the book. I would have adored this book when I was a tween…the girls are fun and real, and face normal struggles of girls today. These girls reminded me a bit of my old fictional friends, the members of The Babysitter’s Club…they each were different and shared a great friendship.

The book is full of beautiful illustrations and the cover is very visually pleasing. There’s even a cute cupcake on the spine that would look adorable on a bookshelf. Little touches like these make me happy. My 10 year old self would have definitely gravitated to this book by looks alone.

Overall, I highly recommend this book to any girl ages 8-12…it would make a great gift.

My Rating: 5 stars

I received this book from Booklook Bloggers to review.

Nyxia by Scott Reintgen Review

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Synopsis: Emmett Atwater isn’t just leaving Detroit; he’s leaving Earth. Why the Babel Corporation recruited him is a mystery, but the number of zeroes on their contract has him boarding their lightship and hoping to return to Earth with enough money to take care of his family.

Forever.

Before long, Emmett discovers that he is one of ten recruits, all of whom have troubled pasts and are a long way from home. Now each recruit must earn the right to travel down to the planet of Eden—a planet that Babel has kept hidden—where they will mine a substance called Nyxia that has quietly become the most valuable material in the universe.

But Babel’s ship is full of secrets. And Emmett will face the ultimate choice: win the fortune at any cost, or find a way to fight that won’t forever compromise what it means to be human.

My Thoughts: Wow! What an adventure this was! This book had me hooked from the first page to the last page. It covered a lot of genres…sci-fi with a bit of a dystopian feel, a lot of action and adventure and some mystery thrown in as well.

There are a lot of characters that are introduced quickly but they all were described in a way that made them easy to distinguish from each other. This book was full of diversity…the characters came from all over the world and spoke many different languages.

I appreciated the fact that there was very little cursing in this book. I would be comfortable letting my 11 year old read it because the content was appropriate.

There were a few surprises that had me gasping…one in particular that I would have never seen coming. The story ended abruptly and I will be one of the first in line to buy the next one when it comes out!

I highly recommend this book for fans of The Hunger Games or Illuminae.

My Rating: 5 stars

I received a copy of this book from Blogging for Books to review.