Thursday, December 30, 2010


You know you've read a good book when you turn the last page and feel a little as if you have lost a friend.”
Paul Sweeney

Here are the books that I have read and loved in 2010.
I know there are many more books that are just as good or
better that I didn't get to read.
I put them in alphabetical order.
Thanks for all of the great reads authors.
More giveaways coming soon.

Beautiful Bandit by Loree Lough
Christmas at Harrington’s by Melody Carlson
Code Triage by Candace Calvert
Courting Morrow Little by Laura Frantz
Cowboy for a Rainy Afternoon by Stephen Bly
Creede of Old Montana by Stephen Bly
Cursebreaker by Nancy Wentz
Deceit by Brandilyn Collins
Don’t Look Back by Lynette Eason
Hearts Awakening by Delia Parr
In the Company of Others by Jan Karon
My Lady by Joyce Wheeler
Not a Sparrow Falls by Linda Nichols
The House on Malcolm Street by Leisha Kelly
The Inn at Angel Island by Thomas Kinkade & Katherine Spencer
The River Nile by Kenny Blair
The Spoils of Eden -The Dawn of Hawaii Series by Linda Lee Chaikin
Too Close to Home by Lynette Eason
Unlocked by Karen Kingsbury

A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted. You should live several lives while reading it.”
William Styron

Monday, December 20, 2010

Unto The Hills*A Daily Devotional by Billy Graham


The classic 365-day devotional from Billy Graham, now back in print.
No matter your place in life, this classic collection of devotional readings is designed to bring you daily to that special place of renewal— to help you pause and gaze "unto the hills" for help and inspiration.
Each of the 365 daily readings in this inspiring collection offers a carefully chosen passage of scripture, a brief, thoughtful message from Dr. Graham, and a heartfelt prayer composed especially for this book. Distilled from a lifetime of study and ministry, these devotionals supply daily food for thought about living fruitfully and joyfully in an often fretful world.
Simple, direct, encouraging yet challenging, this book offers itself as a heartening companion for your daily walk in the valley. This collection is a gentle but constant reminder that we can find help for all our needs as long as we remember to look up . . . unto the hills but especially unto the Lord.

Format: Trade Paper
Trim Size: 5.90 x 8.90 x 1.30
Page Count: 432
Retail Price: $14.99 ISBN: 0849946212
ISBN-13: 9780849946219
Style#: 9780849946219

William Franklin "Billy" Graham, Jr (born November 7, 1918) is an American evangelical Christian reverend/evangelist. As of April 25, 2010, when he met with Barack Obama, he has been a spiritual adviser to twelve United States presidents going back to Harry S. Truman, and is number seven on Gallup's list of admired people for the 20th century. He is a Southern Baptist. He rose to celebrity status as his sermons were broadcast on radio and television.
It is said that Graham has preached in person to more people around the world than any other preacher in history. According to his staff, as of 1993 more than 2.5 million people had "stepped forward at his crusades to accept Jesus Christ as their personal Savior". As of 2008, Graham's lifetime audience, including radio and television broadcasts, topped 2.2 billion.

“Unto The Hills” by Billy Graham is a Daily Devotional. This devotional was written 25 years ago, but brought back into print this year. I really love this book because it is a devotional for every day, 365 devotionals. Also love “Unto The Hills” because it was written by Billy Graham. I believe everyone knows who he is. The only thing Billy Graham has ever wanted to do is bring others to Christ.
Each page of the devotional has a Bible passage to read, what Billy Graham thinks about that passage and also a beautiful prayer.
Billy’s insights are full of love, wisdom and peaceful thoughts. You will be encouraged and enlightened each and every day.
I highly recommend anything written by Billy Graham, but this book will be with you each day.



Disclosure of Material Connection: I receive books free from Thomas Nelson Publishers as part of their Book Review Blogger program/BookSneeze. I am not required to write a positive review. The opinions I express are my own. This is true of any book I review for any publisher or author; I will not review books where a positive review is required and I will always express my own opinions of each book received and read.

In Every Heartbeat by Kim Vogel Sawyer* A REVIEW

As three friends who grew up in the same orphanage head off to college together, they each harbor a cherished dream. Libby wishes to become a famous journalist, Pete plans to study to become a minister, and Bennett wants to join a fraternity and have as much fun as possible. But as tensions rise around the world on the brink of World War I, the friends' differing aspirations and opinions begin to divide them, as well. And when Libby makes a shocking discovery about Pete's family, will it drive a final wedge between the friends or bond them in ways they never anticipated?

Paperback: 352 pages
Publisher: Bethany House (September 1, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0764205102
ISBN-13: 978-0764205101
Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 5.5 x 1 inches
Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces

Best-selling, award-winning author Kim Vogel Sawyer is a wife, mother, grandmother, author, speaker, singer of songs and lover of chocolate...but most importantly, she's a born-again child of the King! A former elementary school teacher, Kim closed her classroom door in 2005 to follow God's call on her heart to write and speak. Now blessed with multiple writing contracts with Bethany House, Barbour, and Zondervan Publishing, Kim enjoys sharing her journey to publication as well as the miraculous story of her healing from a life-long burden of pain and shame. Kim's gentle yet forthright testimony lends credence to the promise of Ps. 117:2--"Great is his love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever."

The book “In Every Heartbeat,” three orphans that grew up together begin their college life.
Libby wants to be a famous journalist. Petey wants to be a minister. Bennett wants to pledge a fraternity, find a place where he belongs and have all the things he felt he missed out on growing up.
Both Petey and Bennett would like for Libby to notice them, but Libby only sees them as brothers and best friends at first. All of them go through many hardships and failures at school to start, but they don’t quit.
Petey is considered an orphan because his parents threw him out when he was a young child. So he wants to go back and tell them how much they hurt him. One of my most favorite parts of the book is when Petey confronts his family and how very touching it is.
During the book you will see how each of them grow up in maturity and spirituality. The book is suppose to take part during WWI but you don’t hear about the war until the end of the book. I always look for the title in the book and this one is very special. It tells us how the Lord is in every heartbeat.
I really liked this book and it’s an easy read. Kim Vogel Sawyer is an excellent author and I love to read her books. I recommend “In Every Heartbeat.”



Thank you to Bethany House for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255

Monday, December 13, 2010

Deceit by Brandilyn Collins-A REVIEW


Joanne Weeks is a skip tracer-someone who looks for deadbeats, a profession worth reading the book to learn more about-and knows that Baxter Jackson killed his wife, who was Joanne's best friend. The investigation stalls until Jackson's second wife turns up dead and frightening events begin to unfold in Joanne's life. Who is the man who jumps in front of her car on a rainy night? Why is he urging her to find Melissa Harkoff, a foster child long gone from the scene? Did someone break into Joanne's home? What does the Jacksons' foster daughter know about Linda Jackson's murder?

Paperback: 320 pages
Publisher: Zondervan (June 29, 2010)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0310276446
ISBN-13: 978-0310276449
Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 5.6 x 0.9 inches
Shipping Weight: 12 ounces

Brandilyn Collins is a best-selling novelist known for
her trademark Seatbelt Suspense®. These harrowing
crime thrillers have earned her the tagline "Don't forget
to b r e a t h e . . ."® Brandilyn's first book, A Question of
Innocence, was a true crime published by Avon in 1995.
Its promotion landed her on local and national TV and
radio, including the Phil Donahue and Leeza talk shows.
Brandilyn's awards for her novels include the ACFW
Book of the Year (three times), Inspirational Readers'
Choice, and Romantic Times Reviewers' Choice.
Brandilyn is also known for her distinctive book on fiction-writing techniques, Getting Into Character: Seven Secrets a Novelist Can Learn From Actors (John Wiley & Sons). The Writer magazine named Getting into Character one of the best books on writing published in 2002.
When she's not writing, Brandilyn can be found teaching the craft of fiction at writers' conferences. She and her family divide their time between homes in the California Bay Area and northern Idaho.

I have always enjoyed every book Brandilyn Collins has ever written and “Deceit” is one of the best. I was very surprised at the ending in this great book. I hate it when half way through a book I discover who the killer is, but this was a surprise to the very end.
This book takes place six years after Joanne’s best friend Linda dies. Joanne blames the death on her friend’s husband, Baxter because of the way he treated her. Then his second wife dies by an accident, but no one wants to look into it because Baxter is everyone’s favorite person in town.
“Deceit” starts out with a Hooded Man that shows up at night, in a thunderstorm, on a winding road, then to make it even better when Joanne finally makes it home after her confrontation with the Hooded Man, she thinks there is someone in her house. Then what makes it ever creepier is the electricity goes out. From the start to the finish “Deceit” will take you on an adrenaline rushing, action packed ride.
I highly recommend “Deceit” to all of my followers who love a great suspenseful, exciting book. This book is very hard to put down and you will read it at one time if you aren’t busy.
Love Brandilyn Collins books!

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Thank you to Zondervan for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

“Aliisa’s Letter” by Carol Van Der Woude A REVIEW

About Aliisa's Letter
Karin began her career as a nurse in Chicago. She was gaining skills and becoming comfortable with all the technology associated with childbirth. When her room-mate becomes ill and dies from mysterious causes, Karin's plan for a successful life in Chicago falls in disarray.
One hundred years earlier Karin's great-grandmother came to Michigan as an immigrant from Finland. When Aliisa arrived in Calumet, the town was booming with wealth generated by the copper mines. Aliisa found a job as a maid in the house of a wealthy merchant. She dreamed of having her own home in town one day. But the copper miner's strike and mine conditions have an impact on her future. Aliisa's dream is dashed.
Despite the years separating the two women, Aliisa has a message of hope for Karin.

Paperback: 224 pages
Publisher: Pleasant Word-A Division of WinePress Publishing (June 15, 2010) Language: English
ISBN-10: 1414115318
ISBN-13: 978-1414115313
Product Dimensions: 6 x 9 x 0.5 inches
Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces

About the author

Carol is the descendant of Finnish copper miners and resilient Finnish women that immigrated to Northern Michigan. She has spent many summers vacationing in the Keweenaw Peninsula and has explored the rich history of the area. Hiking through wilderness that is bordered by Lake Superior, she enjoys berry-picking. She finds refreshment walking along the beach of Lake Superior listening to the waves roll in.
Carol enjoys gardening, preparing meals, and making pies and jam. She has been married to Dan for 32 years and they have three children. The arrival of grandchildren has motivated her to renew knitting projects.
Carol graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in nursing. She has worked in labor/delivery units in Michigan and Illinois. For many years she taught Lamaze classes. She is grateful for the experience of attending homebirths with a physician practice.
Carol’s experiences as a nurse have given her the opportunity to witness God’s marvelous design for childbirth. A woman’s intricate hormonal system, her response to pain, and the physics of infant rotation and descent, are part of the process. In the best situations, health care supports birth as it unfolds. She feels fortunate to have had the experience of assisting birth in the home setting.

“Aliisa’s Letter” by Carol Van Der Woude is a wonderful story. It takes place in two parts of the US. Chicago and In the U.P. , Upper Peninsula of Michigan. I’m quite familiar with the U.P. because I’ve lived in parts of it and travel through it every summer. So this book talked a lot of places that I’m familiar with.
Karin, a nurse in Chicago starts off with having to go to two funerals. Her grandmother that she didn’t know and her roommate. Both of these funerals send her on a journey of discovery trying to find out how her grandmother lived and how her roommate died. It is very interesting how these two stories come together to make one story.
Different parts of this book tells about different ways to give birth. Hospital setting to home setting, different complications and benefits. This book also talks about abortion and some effects it can have on women.
Karin goes to the U.P. to attend a friend’s wedding and also finds out her grandmother was also a resident of the U.P. She has the opportunity to visit the U.P. several times and sees how different hospitals and doctors offices work.
I love babies and birthing and was quite taken with this story. You get many views about what is best for mother and baby and see how things turn out if you rely on your own strength and not on the Lord.
This is a really sweet book that I would recommend. It opens your eyes to many different ways to live life.

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Thank you to Wine Press for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255

Maverick Heart by Loree Lough-Book 2 Lone Star Legends A REVIEW

Nurse Levee O’Reilly and her husband, Dr. Liam O’Reilly, are headed west to the California Territory to practice medicine when their stagecoach is tragically attacked by the infamous Frank Michaels. All alone now and grieving, Levee makes her way to Eagle Pass, Texas. The local doctor cant afford to pay a staff nurse, however, and so she turns to the only other option -teaching. Devoted wholeheartedly to her students, Levee has little time for romance.
Daniel Neville has battled doubts and distrust for most of his life. Wracked with guilt over his twin sisters death and then punished with a limp from an injury sustained during a stampede, Dan dedicates himself to serving his family and working with horses on their ranch. Marriage is far from the top of his to-do list, and he aims to keep it that way. When a coincidental meeting brings Levee and Dan together, they’re awakened to a long ignored desire for love and acceptance by the realization that they might have finally found it. Can these two mavericks accept the plans God has for their lives?

Paperback: 400 pages
Publisher: Word Alive (January 2011)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1603742263
ISBN-13: 978-1603742269
Product Dimensions: 20.6 x 13.2 x 2.8 cm S
hipping Weight: 272 g

A prolific writer, Loree Lough has more than seventy books, sixty short stories, and 2,500 articles in print. Her stories have earned dozens of industry and Reader's Choice awards. A frequent guest speaker for writers' organizations, book clubs, private and government institutions, corporations, college and high school writing programs, and more, Loree has encouraged thousands with her comedic approach to learned-the-hard-way lessons about the craft and industry.

For decades, Loree has been an avid wolf enthusiast, and she dedicates a portion of her income each year to efforts that benefit the magnificent animals. She splits her time between a home in the Baltimore suburbs and a cabin in the Allegheny Mountains, and she shares her life with a spoiled pointer named Cash and her patient, dedicated husband, who has supported her writing and teaching endeavors throughout the years.

Released Jan 2011

“Maverick Heart” is book two in the Lone Star Legends Series. Book one is called “Beautiful Bandit.” I read and reviewed “Beautiful Bandit,” here is the review link if you would like to read it. As with book one in the Lone Star Legends Series I really loved “Maverick Heart.” It is full of emotions, like love, loss, happiness, sadness and finally peace and forgiveness.
One of my favorite parts of the story is when Levee goes on a trail drive with Dan and his hands as the cook. She doesn’t let her being a woman get in the way of her doing her job. She becomes a great help and asset to the group of others.
Levee is teaching school and really loves it, but she is a nurse and she helps the town out when the doctor isn’t available. She never quits even when she is exhausted.
Dan loves his horses and brothers and cousins children. He thinks Levee is the most beautiful woman he has met. I like the way he says Levee’s eyes are the color of lilacs. I’ve never heard of that before and it just brings to mind such beauty.
Levee and Dan become friends and share many things in life about their past and the way they are going in the future.
I really like “Maverick Heart” and I recommend you read it if you want a very enjoyable time. It is a book that is easy to read and lots of fun, with some serious moments.
Buy it today!

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Thanks to Whitaker House publishing company for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

The Missionary by William Carmichael and David Lambert a review

Yesterday David Eller was an American missionary serving the poor in Venezuela. Today he is an international fugitive.
David Eller rescues impoverished children in Caracas, Venezuela, with his wife, Christie. But for David, that isn’t enough. The supply of homeless children is endless because of the massive poverty and the oppressive policies of the Venezuelan government.
When the CIA gives David an opportunity to do something more—to heal the disease rather than working on the symptoms—he decides to go for it. But little by little, he falls into an unimaginable nightmare of espionage, ending in a desperate, life-or-death gamble to flee the country with his wife and son.
Was he wrong to resort to political solutions?
And was it really the CIA that asked him to get involved?

Paperback: 384 pages
Publisher: Moody Publishers; 1 edition (March 1, 2009)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 0802455697
Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.4 x 1.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces

William Carmichael, along with his wife Nancie, are the founding publishers of Good Family Magazines, which included Christian Parenting Today and Virtue. He is the author of several non-fiction books, including the bestselling Seven Habits of a Healthy Home. Books he co-authored with Nancie include Lord, Bless My Child and Lord, Bless This Marriage.

William has a Masters degree in Education from the University of Santa Clara, and degrees from Southern California College and Bethany College, as well as an honorary doctorate from Corban College. William has served on the board of directors of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association; the Board of Trustees of Bethany College; and is current Corporate Vice President of Assist International. The Missionary is his first novel.

David Lambert is the author of ten published books, including the gold medallion award-winning Jumper Fables, co-authored with Ken Davis. Four of the ten have been fiction for juvenile or young adult readers. His short fiction has been published in periodicals as diverse as TQ, The Chariton Review, Sand, Virtue, Moody, Guideposts for Kids, and Story.

David has an M.F.A. in fiction writing from the University of Montana. He has held a variety of positions in publishing, including managing editor of a youth magazine and founding editor of two others. He spent eighteen years as an acquiring editor at Zondervan, most of that time as Executive Editor for fiction. He is now senior fiction editor at Howard Books, a division of Simon & Schuster. David also sits on the Editorial Board of Jerry Jenkins's Christian Writers Guild and wrote the Guild's fiction curriculum.

The first part of this book really caught my attention and makes you think about everything you do. Here are a few first sentences of “The Missionary”,
“Life turns on small choices. A last-minute decision to take a shortcut over a snowy pass. A shrugging dismissal of the odd-looking man in the long coat standing off to one side. A decision to postpone a physical exam till a less busy time. A word spoke with the best intentions.”
All of these we do every day and think nothing of them, but David Eller made a choice that cost him much.
David and Christie Eller are missionaries in Venezuela. The country is full of political unrest and drug cartels. They work with poor and sick children. David wants to somehow help more than he already is and this choice is life changing. “The Missionary” is very suspenseful and action packed. It shows how we sometimes can go ahead and make our own decisions without waiting on God's direction. David meets a stranger with a helping hand with the children and also with money for the clinic. A short time later the same man comes visits Hope Village. Where the Eller’s are working. The man says he is Carlos Edwards. He makes a deal with David that will make everything he has been working for well worth while. The president Armando Guzman is not well liked. Before David knows it, he is caught in a violent war, one that could cost him and everything he holds precious.
This was a really interesting, thrilling read. I would recommend “The Missionary” for a fast-paced, page-turning read.

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Thank you to Moody Publishers for providing this book for review. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission's 16 CFR, Part 255