Tag Archives: friends

Book Review, “The Masterpiece,” Francine Rivers author

the masterpiece cover

The Masterpiece, by Francine Rivers, is an incredible book.  It is set in the Los Angeles area in current time. It tells the stories of two characters whose lives have taken them down paths they had no desire to travel.

Grace Moore is still recovering from a bad marriage and the choices she made afterward when she accepts a job as personal assistant to Roman Velasco. Roman, a successful artist, constantly battles his past and has deep issues preventing him from forming lasting relationships. The two work well together for a time, until they develop feelings for each other. Grace leaves, knowing she cannot stay and give in to temptation with a man who is not a Christian. Roman begins to examine his life and decide how much of his life he is willing to relinquish to his newly found Savior.

This book is a masterpiece of its own.  I especially liked the character development. The characters seemed very real to life. The Mastersons, Jasper, and Elizabeth also added quite a bit to the story.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian 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, “42 Seconds,” Carl Medearis author

42 Seconds cover

42 Seconds: The Jesus Model for Everyday Interactions, by Carl Medearis, is a marvelous book. It is designed to be used as either an inspirational book or as a four-week Bible study.

Medearis has determined that the average length of Jesus’ conversations as recorded in the Gospels is forty-two seconds. Yet Jesus profoundly impacted people’s lives in that short amount of time. This book strives to teach the reader how to interact with people like Jesus. Sections include: Be Kind, Be Present, Be Brave, and Be Jesus. Topics addressed include: Do Something Small, Breathe Deep, Say Something Crazy, and Do My Words Match My Actions. The author also encourages the reader to send out the opener in each section in a text or tweet.

This is an amazing book. It concisely teaches the reader how to interact with others in a loving and kind way. I especially like the fact that it includes social media instead of pushing it away.

I would recommend this book to anyone attempting to improve their social skills or outreach programs.

Kara

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

 

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Book Review, “Out of the Ordinary,” Jen Turano author

out of the ordinary cover

Out of the Ordinary, by Jen Turano, is the second book in the Apart From the Crowd series.  It follows Behind the Scenes. The story is set in New York in 1883 and tells the story of a young woman working as a paid companion to an elderly woman.

Gertrude Cadwalader’s employer is challenging, as she tends to steal items from others and then send Gertrude to return them unnoticed. When this occurs at a friend’s engagement party, Gertrude is furious and gives her notice. Upon attempting to return the items, she is caught and taken to the police station. Her friend, Harrison Sinclair, is caught between his sister, who caught Gertrude and called the police, and his dear friend, Gertrude herself.  As the truth comes out, Gertrude and Harrison find themselves attracted to each other and working together to set things right.

This was a wonderful story.  While I found the wording in the book somewhat difficult to maneuver, especially the first half, I also found myself glued to the story line. Gertrude was honest and intelligent. Harrison was unique and confident. But I found Mrs. Davenport a most interesting character, with her flaws and repentant nature.

I would recommend this story 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, “Heart on the Line,” Karen Witemeyer author

heart on the line cover

Heart on the Line, by Karen Witemeyer, is the second installment of the Ladies of Harper’s Station series. It follows No Other Will Do. Harper’s Station is located in the old west, with mainly female residents.

Grace Mallory relocates to Harper’s Station after witnessing her father’s murder. She brings with her, however, evidence of a crime that her father was attempting to turn over to a Pinkerton agent. When those implicated located her, sending a threatening message, Amos Bledsoe rushes to the rescue.  He and Grace, both telegraph operators, have been developing a relationship over the wires. He hopes to save her from danger and become her hero, but upon arrival Amos discovers that Grace and the other residents of Harper’s Station are not as helpless as he originally thought.

Even though I had not read the first book in this series, I enjoyed this book. Though some events from the first book are referenced, one does not need it to understand this one.  I liked the independent nature of the women in this book. I especially appreciated Amos’s sense of humor and the nicknames he gave people, such as Revolver Granny.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys reading western or 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, “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, “Peace in the Valley,” Ruth Logan Herne author

peace in the valley cover

Peace in the Valley, by Ruth Logan Herne, is the third book in the Double S Ranch series.  This book illustrates what can happen to people when they follow God’s plan rather than their own. It completes the story of the Stafford family.

Trey Walker Stafford returns home to central Washington to give part of his liver to his uncle/father, Sam Stafford, the man who rescued him after his parents’ death and took him in as his own son. When Sam asks Trey to help him repay Lucy Carlton’s family for his past uncaring behavior by restoring her crumbling farm, Trey is happy to help.  But as Lucy and Trey work together and grow closer, he discovers Lucy’s past and is reminded of his late wife’s mistakes. He must decide if he can put the past aside and move on to share a life with Lucy and her children. His country singer superstar status only complicates the matter, leaving Lucy to guard her heart and expect disappointment.

I enjoyed this book. It was a fitting conclusion to this beautiful story of forgiveness and restitution. I found Lucy a very down to earth person, easy to relate to in real life. I especially liked Isabo, who seemed to lovingly take control when others needed her.

I would recommend this book to anyone who enjoys Christian 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, “Upon a Spring Breeze,” Kelly Irvin author

Upon a Spring Breeze cover

Upon a Spring Breeze, by Kelly Irvin, is the first book in An Every Amish Season series. It tells the story of an Amish woman progressing through the grief process. The book includes discussion questions at the end.

Bess Weaver, just twenty-years-old and expecting her first child, is shocked when her husband, Caleb, is suddenly killed when a car strikes his buggy. Devastated, she begins by just getting through each day. But eventually, she takes a job at a local bed and breakfast cleaning and planting flowers to help her move forward. Aiden, Caleb’s best friend, is also grieving. In addition, he is in love with Bess, and struggles over the idea of reaching out to her. With his own farm recovering from a bird infection, he must begin from scratch. Having loved Bess since childhood, he is not sure how to proceed or what actions would even be appropriate.

This was a great book. I found it a little slow in the beginning, but could not put it down by the end. It tells a beautiful story of loss, love, and friendship. I  especially liked the three other widows who gathered to help Bess through this difficult time.

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

Kara

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

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