Book Review, “Just Look Up,” Courtney Walsh author

Just Look Up cover

Just Look Up, by Courtney Walsh, is a charming novel.  Set in the present day, it tells a story of love and forgiveness not just with friends and coworkers, but also within one’s own family.

Lane Kelly is a busy interior designer climbing to the top of her Chicago-based firm. When she receives a call with news that her brother has been involved in an accident and is in a coma, the last thing she wants to do is return home to Harbor Point, Michigan, to help.  She left her family behind years ago and has no interest in returning to them.  Ryan Brooks never thought he would settle in Harbor Point. But after returning from fighting overseas with the army, he found himself drawn to the place that brought him peace as a child.  When the two reunite over Nate, Lane’s brother and Ryan’s best friend, Ryan realizes that he has always loved Lane and sets about building a relationship with her.

This was a wonderful story. The many examples of patience and love, not just with Lane and Ryan but with the entire family, are inspiring. I especially liked the contrast between the busy city life and the peaceful life of a small town. I also was drawn to Betsy, the patient and loyal friend.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian romance novels.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

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Book Review, “Threads of Suspicion,” Dee Henderson author

threads of suspicion cover

Threads of Suspicion, by Dee Henderson, is an Evie Blackwell Cold Case novel. It accompanies Traces of Guilt. Dee Henderson sets the story in Chicago in the present day.

Evie Blackwell, an investigator for the Illinois State Police, has been appointed to the new Missing Persons Task Force.  Her first case involves a missing college student who disappeared after attending a concert one night.  When her case intersects with that of her new partner, David Marshall, who is searching for a missing private investigator, and they find out the concert attended that night was that of David’s girlfriend, the situation begins to develop into something more serious. They may even be looking for a serial killer. As they strive to solve the two cases, both Evie and David also struggle with situations in their personal lives.

This was a marvelous book. While I found it slow in the beginning, Dee Henderson did not disappoint as the story developed. I especially liked the character development, the feeling that the people in the story seemed real. Evie’s friend, Ann, was also a favorite, with her helpful and down-to-earth personality.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading Christian suspense novels.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

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Book Review, “The Road to Paradise,” Karen Barnett author

road to paradise cover

The Road to Paradise, by Karen Barnett, is a Vintage National Parks Novel. It is a wonderful story, with praise from authors such as Lauraine Snelling and Jane Kirkpatrick included. It is set in Mount Rainier National Park in 1927.

Margaret Lane is tired of playing the socialite and being the formal Senator’s daughter. She is thrilled at the opportunity to spend some time in Mount Rainier National Park. She writes lush descriptions of the park in her journal from the first time she enters it. Chief Ranger Ford Brayden is not looking forward to having to babysit a Senator’s daughter. He sees no part in wasting resources on such a person. But when Margie’s former fiancé begins the process of developing a tourist playground in the park and destroying much of the natural beauty to do it, the two find common ground. Together they try to find a way to save the place they both love so much.

This was a marvelous book. It includes many details of the park and its splendor. I especially liked Margie’s spunky personality. I also appreciated her father’s self-sacrifice for her happiness.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys historical fiction.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

 

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Book Review, “The Essential Guide to Prayer,” Dutch Sheets author

the essential guide to prayer cover

The Essential Guide to Prayer: How to Pray with Power and Effectiveness, by Dutch Sheets, is a wonderful book. It encourages the reader to develop a stronger prayer life by developing a “solid relationship with God as Father and friend.”

The many chapters in this book cover several different aspects of prayer. Some of these are priority, plan, person, purpose, prize, place, protection, power, perseverance, pain, and pleasure. Each chapter closes with Did You Understand?  This lists questions to direct the reader toward the main message of the chapter. Before each list of questions is a sample prayer. The book includes many stories of real-life people and situations.

This book would be a great asset for new Christians or those just beginning their walk with Christ. It could also be useful for those wishing to enhance their current prayer lives. The author shares many personal examples from his own family to illustrate each point. My only criticism is the fact that he uses the word intercession instead of prayer, leaving out the fact that there are other types of prayer to consider.

I would recommend this book to anyone attempting to have a deeper and more consistent prayer life.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

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Book Review, “Do Baby Bears Have Mommies?” Crystal Bowman and Teri McKinley authors

Do Baby Bears Have Mommies cover

Do Baby Bears Have Mommies? by Crystal Bowman and Teri McKinley is a wonderful book. It is a part of the I’ve Got Questions series. This adorable book is illustrated by Ailie Busby.

This book, written as a delightful children’s poem, is full of the type of questions that children frequently ask their parents. Some of the questions included in the book are: What do kangaroos keep in their pouches? How do earthworms get around? Are some ladybug boys? and Why are eagles’ wings so long?  Along with the lovely illustrations, this book has a rhythm that is sure to appeal to young children.

I enjoyed this book.  It is well-written and includes questions that are sure to hold the interest of young ones and amuse them throughout the book.  The pictures are simple, but well-done, and catch the eye. I especially liked the pages with the giraffes and the ducks.

I would recommend this book to parents, grandparents, and anyone choosing books for children ages 4-7.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

 

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Book Review, “Women Who Move Mountains,” Sue Detweiler author

Women Who Move Mountains cover

Women Who Move Mountains: Praying with Confidence, Boldness, and Grace, by Sue Detweiler, is an impressive book. In this book, Detweiler takes the reader on “a journey, where we learn to speak to the mountains of fear, discouragement, loss, pain, or whatever it is that’s hindering us from moving forward with God.”

This book challenges each of us to overcome the obstacles in our lives and turn them into opportunities for purposeful mission. Readers are encouraged to move out of their comfort zones and pray through anything that separates them from God. It includes a suggested format for group use. Chapters include: I Believe, I am Honored, Learning to Pray with Conviction, Learning to Pray with Peace, and I am Bold.  Also included at the end of the book are: 21 Days to Spiritual Breakthrough, Guidelines for Taking a Spiritual Retreat, and Guidelines for Fasting. Types of fasts described are: Media Fast, Daniel Fast, Liquid Fast, One-Meal Fast, One-Day Fast, and 21-Day Fast.

This book is written to assist with prayer life and much more. I would recommend it to any woman desiring an improved relationship with God.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

 

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Book Review, “The Noble Servant,” Melanie Dickerson author

the noble servant cover

The Noble Servant, by Melanie Dickerson, is a wonderful book.  It is set in the medieval time period and is a part of the books related to the Medieval Fairy Tale Novels series. In fact, some of the characters are included in this story.

Magdalen of Mallin unexpectedly receives a marriage proposal from the Duke of Wolfberg, something she has dreamed of since meeting him two years prior. Realizing also that this may be the only way to save her people since the area copper mines have failed, she quickly leaves for Wolfberg Castle. On the way, her servant forces her to trade places, leaving Magdalen to work as a servant upon arrival. Meanwhile, Steffan, the Duke of Wolfberg, returns from time spent in Prague to find that his cousin is impersonating him in Wolfberg castle. Disguising himself as a shepherd, he and Magdalen meet each other, eventually recognizing the situation and attempting to plan a way to expose the imposters.

This was a magnificent book. I enjoyed it from beginning to end. Both the character development and the details of medieval life are very well done.  I especially liked the way in which the characters voiced their need to rely upon the Lord for their rescue and their needs.

I would recommend this novel to anyone who enjoys reading Christian fiction or medieval fairy tales.

Kara

I received this book free from the publisher and was not required to write a positive review.

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