Friday, January 29, 2016

Thin Ice was a Triple Spin

Thin Ice
Irene Hannon




Book Summary: After losing her parents in a car accident and her sister to a house fire, Christy Reed has been mired in grief. Life is finally starting to feel normal again when an envelope arrives in the mail--addressed in her sister's handwriting. And the note inside claims she is still alive. FBI Special Agent Lance McGregor, a former Delta Force operator, is assigned to reopen the case, but he's coming up with more questions than answers. If Ginny Reed is still alive--who is the woman buried in her grave? Where is Ginny? And is Christy a pawn in a twisted cat-and-mouse game--or the target of a sinister plot? As he digs deeper, one thing becomes clear: whoever is behind the bizarre ruse has a deadly agenda.

Review: This mystery was intense!!!! I prefer a ‘who done it’ more than a ‘cat and mouse’ suspense. The story had a lot of sub plots that at times distracted from the main plot it is possible to keep the story rolling. The psycho that was the murder was overwhelmingly well written. I have to say that I was uncomfortable with the detail of the storyline. The very sad circumstances the murder’s grandmother was in made the entire plot depressing and seemingly hopeless. The ending helps lift some of the depressing circumstances. I think that I really enjoyed the first 1/3rd of the story because of how intelligent Christy was and yet near the end she failed to live up to that intelligence. For me that was sad. The average woman could not fend off the average male. I thought her plan and getting the cell phone back on was back on track with who Christy is.

I would like to thank Net Galley and Revell for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Friday, January 15, 2016

The Painter's Daughter Paints a Good Portrait

The Painter’s Daughter
Julie Klassen




Book Summary: Sophie Dupont assists her father in his studio, keeping her own artwork out of sight. In private, she paints the picturesque north Devon coast, popular with artists--including handsome Wesley Overtree, who seems more interested in Sophie than the landscape. Captain Stephen Overtree is accustomed to taking on his brother Wesley's responsibilities. Near the end of his leave, he is sent to find his brother and bring him home. Upon reaching Devonshire, however, Stephen is stunned to learn Wesley has sailed for Italy and left his host's daughter in serious trouble. Stephen feels duty-bound to act, and strangely protective of the young lady, who somehow seems familiar. Wanting to make some recompense for his own past failings as well as his brother's, Stephen proposes to Miss Dupont. He does not offer love, but marriage "in name only" to save her from scandal. If he dies in battle, as he fears, she will at least be a respectable widow. Desperate for a way to escape her predicament, Sophie finds herself torn between her first love and this brooding man she barely knows. Dare she wait for Wesley to return? Or should she elope with the captain and pray she doesn't come to regret it?

Review: I really love Julie Klassen’s books. I love Stephen’s character. He was the best of the book. Sophie grew on me as the story progressed. I especially enjoyed the secondary characters in the story. Winnie, Angela, Kate, Winnie and the grandfather. The interactions and relationships between these characters is what made the story. I even found Keith to grow on me. That is why this book is good. Secrets also hold my attention like no other. Wesley was a great protagonist for the story. He was not overly likable to me anyway. I found some portions slow and it was the secondary characters that held things together for me. As I read the story I tried to decide if anything could be trimmed from the story and came up believing that no things were as they should be. I did not like many of the interactions that Sophie and Wesley had, mostly because Sophie was so blinded by Wesley. I did like the resolution to everything. It surely made the overall book worth reading.

I would like to thank Net Galley and Bethany House for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Rising Darkness Rose Slowly for Me!

Rising Darkness
Nancy Mehl




Book Summary: Sophie Wittenbauer left her strict Mennonite hometown under a cloud of shame and regret. Certain she's left her past far behind her, she's now focused on her job at a newspaper and is shocked when she stumbles upon the name of someone she knew in her old life. But when she learns the man--a prisoner--claims a suspect from a decades-old unsolved crime is hiding out in the small town of Sanctuary, Missouri, she can't resist following the lead in hopes of furthering her career. Almost immediately upon her arrival, Sophie's confronted with a face from her past and fears her intention of using a false identity to investigate is doomed. But with the help of Sanctuary's charismatic young pastor, Sophie knows she's getting close. Will she be able to conceal the truth of her own past long enough to find the suspect before someone puts a stop--fatal or otherwise--to her investigation?

Review: I usually love Nancy Mehl’s books. I found myself reading this very slow. I struggled to get into the story and the details as I worked my way through it. It did get better after the first half. I usually sail right through these books. I loved the first 2 in the series. It had the added bonus of being a foot in the Sanctuary Series and the Kingdom Series. This should have endeared me to it, I did not mind that Sophie was not a Christian at the start and her life in Kingdom was awful, I just found her telling blatant lies a little hard to take. I do understand the reporter in her wanted to investigate under cover, but to smear the name of a dead woman seemed a little over the top. That was part of my problem. At the story unfolded Sophie grew on me. I think by than it was a little late for me to really love this book, however I did grow to like it.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Bethany House Publishers for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Deadlock is Now Broken!

Deadlock
DiAnn Mills




Book Summary: Two murders have rocked the city of Houston. Are they the work of a serial killer, or is a copycat trying to get away with murder? That is the question facing Special Agent Bethany Sanchez, who is eager for her new assignment in violent crimes but anxious about meeting her new partner. Special Agent Thatcher Graves once arrested her brother, and he has a reputation for being a maverick. Plus, their investigative styles couldn’t be more opposite: he operates on instinct, while she goes by the book. When hot leads soon fizzle out, their differences threaten to leave them deadlocked. But an attempt on their lives turns up the heat and brings them closer together, and a third victim might yield the clue that will help them zero in on a killer. This could be the case of their careers . . . if they can survive long enough to solve it.

Review: This was a great book. I was at the edge of my seat!! I liked the characters. There whole mystery ended up being so complex and yet so simple. The ending was a little too simple. Not like the blow outs endings that Ms. Mills has written in the previous books in this series. It was worth it. So many things resolved in such a short chapter it was head spinning. The serial killer was a bit of surprise and yet I was able to follow the twists and turns as they occurred. I had my suspicion about who the serial killer was and despite that there were some twists. It was great to have some of the background characters were welcomed since they survived their own mystery. I can’t wait for the next series or a continuation of this series.

I would like to thank Edelweiss (Above the Treeline) and Tyndale House Publishing, Inc. for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Christmas Joy Ride was Joyful!!!

Christmas Joy Ride
Melody Carlson




Book Summary: Miranda did not put adventure on her Christmas list, but thanks to her eighty-five-year-old neighbor Joy, that's exactly what she's getting this year. When Joy tells Miranda that she plans to drive an old RV decked out in Christmas decorations from their Chicago neighborhood to her new retirement digs in Phoenix--in the dead of winter, no less--the much younger Miranda insists that Joy cannot make such a trip by herself. Unemployed and facing foreclosure, Miranda feels she has nothing to lose by packing a bag and heading off with Joy toward Route 66. But Joy has a hidden agenda for their Christmas joyride--one that could derail the whole venture. No one captures the heartwarming fun of the Christmas season quite like Melody Carlson. Fasten your seat belt, because it's going to be an exciting ride!

Review: This was a fantastic Christmas story. I really liked the Route 66 ride. That is a classic old fashioned route paired with Christmas. When I think of Christmas I want an old fashioned one, what a great way to start a new tradition riding Route 66. Joy was fantastic!! She was a spunky character and along with Miranda this was a fantastic book about helping others and driving in a RV! Oh what a fun ride. I would like to join them. The sweetness of people getting their wishes for a great Christmas was enjoyable. I really liked each of the places they stopped and doing great things to help those in need of holiday cheer. As the end nears, I was so happy with the outcome and move this book to a holiday classic.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Revell for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Murder at the Courthouse was Conflicting

Murder at the Courthouse
A.H. Gabhart




Book Summary: Michael Keane's stressful days as a Columbus police officer are done. He's ready to relax into his new position as deputy sheriff in his sleepy hometown. Nothing ever happens in Hidden Springs, Kentucky--and that's just fine with Michael. Nothing, that is, until a dead body is discovered on the courthouse steps. As Michael works to solve the case, it seems that every nosy resident in town has a theory. When the sheriff insists Michael check out one of these harebrained theories, his surprising discovery sends him on a bewildering search for a mysterious killer that has him questioning everything he has ever believed about life in Hidden Springs. Bringing with her a knack for creating settings you want to visit and an uncanny ability to bring characters to life, A. H. Gabhart pens a whodunit that will keep you guessing.

Review: I was very conflicted by this book. I really liked the characters and guessed who did it from the beginning. The pieces were easy to put together. The beginning was slow, for me very slow. I like the fast pace or suspense of a mystery too. The second incident was more startling. That is when the storyline began to come together and the entire story improved tremendously. I liked the story being told with Michael as the main character. The history of the storyline was tragic and intriguing. I can honestly say if the pace was as fast as the middle to end were I would be hooked for a second installment. I may consider reading another story now that the town and townspeople are known it may make for a more cozy mystery.

I would like to thank Net Galley and Revell for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.

Friday, October 23, 2015

A Woman's Wisdom:How the Book of Proverbs Speaks to Everything is a Proper Teaching in Time

A Woman’s Wisdom
Lydia Brownback




Book Summary: Advice books are no short-lived trend, even though much of the advice parading as “wisdom” proves shallow in the long run. What we need is biblical wisdom, and even more than that we need hearts set on the One who governs all our practicalities. The book of Proverbs unlocks the key to both, helping us to face very real challenges such as:
• handling our freedom, independence, and material resources wisely
• keeping ourselves sexually pure
• practicing biblical femininity in a world that scorns us for it
• sustaining God-glorifying marriages
• elevating biblical priorities ahead of day-to-day pressures
Exploring the timeless counsel in the book of Proverbs, A Woman’s Wisdom teaches us to know the very Author of wisdom and to apply his relevant, how-to riches.
Review: I liked this book. Although it was not exhaustive it was Biblical. I liked that every time she sought to make a point she used scripture. Than would elaborate on it with examples, especially how she struggles. It was never preachy, yet she did make good use of her points and examples. She laid out some very thought provoking concepts about becoming desensitized to our sin. She also worked through the ideas of growing in discipleship. I liked how the overall book was set up and the use of Proverbs. It is a tough piece of scripture to elaborate on yet she does a wonderful job. One of my favorite points was about fear. I think her ideas were a representation of the Scripture. She does a great job of pulling from other scripture while using Proverbs.
I would like to thank Net Galley and Crossway for allowing me to read and review this book in return for a free copy and I was never asked to write a favorable review by anyone. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255