Posted in Book reviews

“On Wings of Devotion” by Roseanna M. White ~ Book Review

On Wings of Devotion (The Codebreakers, #2)

“On Wings of Devotion” by Roseanna M White

Book Two in the CodeBreakers series

Review copy from the publishers

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

About the Book:

All of England thinks Phillip Camden a monster–a man who deliberately caused the deaths of his squadron. But as nurse Arabelle Denler watches the so-dubbed “Black Heart” every day, she sees something far different: a hurting man desperate for mercy. And when their paths twist together and he declares himself her new protector, she realizes she has her own role to play in his healing.
Phillip Camden would have preferred to die that day with his squadron rather than be recruited to the Admiralty’s codebreaking division. The threats he receives daily are no great surprise and, in his opinion, well deserved. What comes as a shock is the reborn desire to truly live that Arabelle inspires in him.
But when an old acquaintance shows up and seems set on using him in a plot that has the codebreakers of Room 40 in a frenzy, new affections are put to the test.
 

 

 

My Thoughts:

 

This was so good! I’m not surprised – every single one of the books I’ve read by this author have been amazing and quickly become favorites. On Wings of Devotion was no exception! The writing is seamless, the plot amazing, and the characters just astonishingly lovely. Phillip Camden is a hero that is rough around the edges, but what an amazing heart he has, truly. I love his character. Same goes for Arabelle – she was utterly fantastic. So kind hearted, so down-to-earth and so real. The pain she felt at wanting to be chosen, to be cared for and about echoed one in my own heart, and so I bonded to her all the more for that. I loved both hers and Cam’s journey. And their relationship was so endearing.I want more of their story, honestly. Does it have to be the end? I know I will adore the next book in this amazing series, and will fall in love with those characters too, but for right now…I want to hang out with Cam and Ara a bit longer. ^.^Superb WWI historical fiction with everything good. <3

Posted in Book reviews

“Isaiah’s Legacy” by Mesu Andrews ~ Book Review

 

Isaiah's Legacy (Prophets and Kings #3)

“Isaiah’s Legacy” by Mesu Andrews

Sequel to Isaiah’s Daughter//Biblical Fiction

Releases February 18th

My Rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

 

 

About the Book:

At eight years old, Shulle has known only life in a small village with her loving but peculiar father. When Uncle Shebna offers shelter in Jerusalem in exchange for Shulle’s help tutoring King Manasseh, Judah’s five-year-old co-regent who displays the same peculiarities as her father, she’s eager to experience the royal court. But Shulle soon realizes the limits of her father’s strict adherence to Yahweh’s Law when Uncle Shebna teaches her of the starry hosts and their power.
Convinced Judah must be freed from Yahweh’s chains, she begins the subtle swaying of young Manasseh, using her charm and skills on the boy no one else understands. When King Hezekiah dies, twelve-year-old Manasseh is thrust onto Judah’s throne, bitter at Yahweh and eager to marry the girl he adores. Assyria’s crown prince favors Manasseh and twists his brilliant mind toward cruelty, beginning Shulle’s long and harrowing journey to discover the Yahweh she’d never known, guided with loving wisdom by Manasseh’s mother: Isaiah’s daughter, the heartbroken Hephzibah. Amid Judah’s dark days, a desperate remnant emerges, claiming the Lord’s promise, “Though we’re helpless now, we’re never hopeless–because we serve El Shaddai.” Shulle is among them, a girl who becomes a queen through Isaiah’s legacy.

 

My Thoughts:

 

What a beautiful book. Going into it, I knew that it might be bit heavy, and more…hard to read as it showed the depravity of the nation under pagan worshipping, and how wicked Manasseh had become. And it was hard in that aspect. But by no means did this story ever drag on or have cause for me to want to put it down.
Brilliantly written, we are thrust into the characters lives and connected so deeply, that the things that cause them pain echo pain in our own hearts just from watching. Likewise, the joy – at the end especially – finds rest upon our soul.
I loved the message of this book. That no one is ever too far for Yahweh to reach, to redeem, to call back home to Him. And King Manasseh’s story is an exceptional tale of this. And not only his, but Meshullemeth’s (Shulle) – her story equally wrote itself upon my heart and touched me deeply. I am still pondering the truths found in this story, and how everything Yahweh promised was fulfilled – just maybe not in their preferred timing. Isn’t that so often the case? We want immediate results, and it’s so easy to doubt when we don’t see His immediate provision or answer…but sometimes those answers don’t come right away. But that doesn’t mean the fulfillment won’t come eventually, right at the time Yahweh desires it to come. Like I said, this theme especially is one that I am personally pondering in my own life, and I am thankful for the corresponding truths in this book to bring it to light.
Oh yes, there was a great deal of pain, a great deal of sorrow in Isaiah’s Legacy. Watching it all play out was hard, but it was also necessary, and it only amplified the redeeming end all the more.
The two books in this series, Isaiah’s Daughter and Isaiah’s Legacy now are definitely two of my most favorite books by this author. They are beautiful and full of meaning, and I look forward to going back over them again.
Quotes:
This book is full of so many good quotes/sections I tabbed, and I wanted to make them intor graphics but our computer has been too slow to do so. =/ But here they are typed out. Maybe eventually I can make them into graphics.
 
 
 
“Why did others ridicule what they couldn’t understand?”
“I don’t know why Yahweh gave me only fifteen more years. But I do know this. Though we don’t always understand God’s plan, we can trust His goodness for a future we can’t yet see.”
“Every man – especially a king – must search his heart to discover what he believes about Yahweh, my love. Nasseh is no exception. He’s simply forced into these decisions younger than most.”
“The blacker the darkness, the brighter God’s spark.”
“There is only one God, my queen, who loves His people enough to pursue you with such powerful detail. Yahweh must have a mighty plan for you, indeed.”
“We learn the Truth in daylight so we can walk in darkness.”
“I don’t believe Yahweh is angered by sincere questions or even when we express anger, but He commands our trust, my king. I hope someday you can trust Him.”
“We’re helpless in this moment, Shulle, but we’re never hopeless. Not as long as we serve El Shaddai, the Almighty One.”
“My God is good. He has a plan. And His victory will somehow be bigger than our sorrow.”
“Never begin a sentence with ‘Yahweh can’t’. Our minds are too small to imagine what He can do.”
“Marvel at the moon and stars, Manasseh, but worship the God who hung them in the sky.”
“No place on earth is beyond Yahweh’s reach – including a man’s heart.”
“Yahweh doesn’t hate you. No matter how many Yahweh followers you kill, we’ll scream forgiveness from our graves…May Yahweh deal with you as gently as you’ll allow, while He draws your heart back to Him.”
“Can you trust My love when you don’t know My plan?”
*I received a copy of this book as apart of the launch team; I was not required to write a positive review.

Posted in Book reviews, Revell Reads

“The Way of the Brave” by Susan May Warren ~ Book Review

The Way of the Brave (Global Search and Rescue #1)

 

The Way of the Brave by Susan May Warren

Book One in the Global Search and Rescue Series

Review copy through the publisher

My rating: 4 out of 5 stars

About the Book:

Former pararescue jumper Orion Starr is haunted by the memory of a rescue gone wrong. He may be living alone in Alaska now, but the pain of his failure–and his injuries–has followed him there from Afghanistan. He has no desire to join Hamilton Jones’s elite rescue team, but he also can’t shirk his duty when the call comes in to rescue three lost climbers on Denali.
Former CIA profiler and psychiatrist Jenny Calhoun’s yearly extreme challenge with her best friends is her only escape from the guilt that has sunk its claws into her. As a consultant during a top-secret mission to root out the Taliban, she green-lighted an operation that ended in ambush and lives lost. When her cathartic climb on Denali turns deadly, she’ll be forced to trust her life and the lives of her friends to the most dangerous of heroes–the man she nearly killed.
Her skills and his experience are exactly what’s needed to prevent another tragedy–but in order to truly set Orion free from his painful past, Jenny will have to reveal hers. They’ll have to put their wounds behind them to survive, but at what cost?

 

 

My Thoughts:

 
Well, I can say with even more certainty now that I hope to never climb a mountain. XD While I may not get the fascination, that doesn’t stop me from reading books where they take on all sorts of peril and danger, and Susan May Warren is one of the best authors for that type of fiction! The Way of the Brave is the first book in her new Search and Rescue series, and it promises to be an epic series indeed.
This book was nonstop action, with strong characters, gripping plot, and an ending that leaves readers begging for more. I really, really want the next book, stat. ;) I can’t wait to read Jake and Aria’s story, not to mention Ham’s story. While I liked the main characters of this story, I felt more pulled towards the side characters. But still, it was a delight to get to know all of the characters, and I know the following books will be a treat.
Very exciting series!

 

Posted in Bethany House, Blades, Book reviews, reading, Reviews, Tomahawks

A Pursuit of Home by Kristi Ann Hunter ~ Book Review

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A Pursuit of Home by Kristi Ann Hunter

Haven Manor Book 3

Review copy from the publisher as apart of the launch team

My rating: 5 out of 5 stars

A Pursuit of Home (Haven Manor, #3)

About the book:

In early 1800s England, Jess Beauchene has spent most of her life in hiding and always on the move in an effort to leave her past far behind her. But when she learns the family she thought had died just might be alive and in danger, she knows her secrets can only stay buried for so long.
Derek Thornbury loves the past, which has led him to become an expert in history and artifacts. He knows Jess has never liked him, but when she requests his help deciphering the clues laid out in an old family diary, he can’t resist the urge to solve the puzzle.
As Jess and Derek race to find the hidden artifact before her family’s enemies, they learn as much about each other as they do about the past. But can their search to uncover the truth and set history right lead to a future together?

 

 

My Thoughts:

 

I’m feeling very inadequate to write this review. I just can’t believe this series is over, and that this particular story is over. I didn’t want it to end! Still don’t, but I suppose I must come to terms with that fact at some point.Readers of the Haven Manor series have been anticipating Jess’ story for quite some time. And oh goodness did it satisfy!! Right from page one of “A Pursuit of Home”, I was drawn into the story, and became even more entwined withe the characters. It was so nice (and sad too) to finally understand Jess and her past. Her snarky character really is marvelous, by the way. Every hardship only made her stronger and more resilient, and I just love her sarcasm. And Derek! Oh my word, was he fantastic too. The banter held between these two was beyond exemplary. I laughed numerous times, and I just loved their chemistry. A sentence that had me grinning:
“Unless you’ve an axe for me to use, I can’t go any farther,” Derek whispered. “And I feel I should warn you, before you produce an axe from some random corner of your person, I haven’t the ability to chop wood silently.”
At first, Derek irritated Jess, and that made for some very humorous situations. Jess was used to being hardened, and the thought of actually caring terrified her. And sometimes I could understand this. “This made her feel vulnerable. This was terrifying”  – I get that. ^.^ Truly, I was just very impressed with the characters as a whole. Beautifully done!The plot was exciting, and I loved seeing how everything unfolded. The mystery, the journeys, the danger, and the growth in each character – it was all just marvelous and I felt right at home within the pages. I also loved the knife-throwing aspect. That was extremely fun as knife-throwing is one of my hobbies  – and I was just flabbergasted to read the acknowledgements and find my name listed there. THANK YOU Kristi Ann Hunter! Being able to share info about knife-throwing was a delight and having my name in the acknowledgements an extreme honor. I’ve been squealing over it for days! :)But yes, in conclusion, this book is amazing, it never disappointed, and I adore these characters. I loved this book so much and am truly sad to see it end. But what an ending it was. I highly recommend this fabulous series! <3

 

 

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Quotes:

 

“The problem with inevitability was that no matter how much effort one put into avoiding them, they still happened.”

 

“Derek loved the scent of books. Paper, ink, leather, and dust created an aroma that always made him feel at home.”

 

“Interesting thing about opinions. They tend to vary from person to person. If they didn’t, they would be facts.”

“This made her feel vulnerable. This was terrifying” — I feel ya Jess.

 

“God had given the sacrifice she needed, not the one she’d asked for. That was the sacrifice love demanded. It wasn’t sacrificing to make someone else happy; it was sacrificing to provide what they needed.”

 

 

 

**I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.  

Posted in Book reviews, Books, Revell Reads, Reviews, Spiritual beliefs

“Finding Lady Enderly” by Joanna Davidson Politano – Book Review (I loved it!!)

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“Finding Lady Enderly” by Joanna Davidson Politano

Review copy through the publisher/author as apart of the launch team

My rating: 5 out of 5 Stars

I loved this book, so so much. It meant so much to me, the message and everything, because it is something I am learning too – my identity in Christ. During the reading of it, I even wrote a poem that, if Rania were real, I’d love to share with her. I will include it at the end of this post, but first read on for the description of this beautiful book and my “official” review! :)

 

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About the Book:

Raina Bretton is a rag woman in London’s east end when a handsome stranger appears in a dank alley and offers her a glittering smile and a chance for adventure. Rothburne Abbey has a unique position for her, one that will take her away from her hardscrabble life and give her a chance to be a lady. Things she could only dream of might be coming true. But some dreams turn out to be nightmares.

Though Raina has traded squalor for silk and satin, something about the abbey is deeply unsettling. As she wrestles with her true identity, the ruin, decay, and secrets she finds at the heart of the old mansion tear at her confidence and threaten to reveal her for who she really is. Only one man stands between her and the danger that lurks within–and only if he decides to keep her biggest secret hidden.

 

 

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My Thoughts:

 

Oh my word, this book. Wow. It floored me in its gentle beauty and remarkable message. It is no coincident that I read it when I did, and took my time to savor it, for the message lined up with what God has been showing me lately, and that just blessed me so much.
I fell so utterly in love with this story, that it will long remain on my favorites shelf. How it is written is so beautifully smooth and captivating, and the plot was fantastic as well, with characters that will just sweep you off your feet.
Truly, I don’t know how I could write a review that would do this book justice. I loved it so much. Dear sweet Rania went through such a journey. And that ending! Not quite what I was expecting, but so much better and full of redemption. Gorgeous prose, amazing characters, and truth about identity that is sure to bless any reader who stumbles into its pages.
The absolute heart that is woven through the story is touching, and that it all shines back to our Creator, is astounding. I’m so in love with this book and its characters. The author did a beautiful job, and I am in awe of her ability to turn it all back to God. <3
I marked SO many places in this book that it would be nearly impossible to share them all. I so badly wanted to make a graphic for each one, but our computer has been so slow that I’m not sure I can even get one made. But the quotes were fantastic and I will savor them for a long time. Hopefully I can get them typed up soon and perhaps I will devote a special post to them in the near future. :)
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My Worth // by Raechel Lenore
I’m building my courage
One strand at a time
I’m lifting my head
by the inch
Healing can come
not all in a wave
but in soft whispers of strength
A Change slowly happening
A change still occuring
My eyes ever upward I raise
Coming to learn
and coming to know
that I reside in a place of grace
Beauty and truth,
they shine from within
they rely not upon another soul
I need not look to another’s face
to know my worth is whole
A crown slowly forming
upon my head
I let it there reside
Not knowing its strength
yet feeling its weight
I’m learning to accept it as mine
My worth to you I do not owe
My worth secure within me
I used to look towards anothers face
to change what grew so simply
Freedom’s glance
feels just wihin reach
and I’m starting to stand taller now
Knowing I am enough on my own
this truth is a new beginning, allowed.
I’ll raise my head another inch
I’ll lift up sparkling eyes
I’ll look into my reflection close and say ‘You are dignified.
My Father has put His crown on you
to His children He has given all
The garments are complete on you
Dignified and without pall
Raise up, you daughter of courage
raise up and continue to mend
Your worth is not held by anothers hands
Your worth is found in Heavens stead
You are worth
all on your own
You are worth and enough
You are a beauty
a pearl all desired
treasured by heavens touch.’
My worth is not measured by others opinions
my worth does not fluctate by anothers whims
My worth cannot be tossed by the wind
when I’ve found it secured within.
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I do ask that you respect that this poem I shared belongs to me and is copyrighted as such. I would be pleased as punch if you wanted to share it linking back to me, just please don’t steal. :) Thank you!!
Posted in 1940's, Book reviews

“My Dearest Dietrich” by Amanda Barratt – Review

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“My Dearest Dietrich” by Amanda Barratt

Review copy from the author/publisher

My rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

About the Book:

A staggering love illuminating the dark corners of a Nazi prison
Renowned German pastor and theologian Dietrich Bonhoeffer is famous for his resistance to the Nazi regime and for his allegiance to God over government. But what few realize is that the last years of his life also held a love story that rivals any romance novel.
Maria von Wedemeyer knows the realities of war. Her beloved father and brother have both been killed on the battlefield. The last thing this spirited young woman needs is to fall for a man under constant surveillance by the Gestapo. How can she give another piece of her heart to a man so likely to share the same final fate? Yet when Dietrich Bonhoeffer, an old family friend, comes to comfort the von Wedemeyers after their losses, she discovers that love isn’t always logical.
Dietrich himself has determined to keep his distance from romantic attachments. There is too much work to be done for God, and his involvement in the conspiracy is far too important. But when he encounters a woman whose intelligence and conviction match his own, he’s unprepared for how easy it is to give away his heart.
With their deep love comes risk–and neither Dietrich nor Maria is prepared for just how great that risk soon becomes.
Based on detailed historical research and including photos from both Maria’s and Dietrich’s lives, this is a true love story at once beautiful and heartrending. My Dearest Dietrich sheds new light on a world-famous theologian . . . and the woman who changed his life.

My Dearest Dietrich: A Novel of Dietrich Bonhoeffer's Lost Love

My Thoughts:

 

Dietrich Bonhoeffer left behind a remarkable legacy. I loved the look into his life that this book brought. Getting to know his “lost love” was an enjoyable story with a bittersweet end.
He was a man of stalwart faith, and reading about his life, even through fiction, is an encouragement! I marked several spots of his wise words. :)
While slow-moving at times, it was a good read. Not one to be rushed through.
My heart hurts for all the atrocities so many endured during WWII. And yet, what strength they showed, especially in their faith.
I didn’t particularily “bond” with Maria.  She endured a lot though, and grew much throughout her journey, I just didn’t care for her, personally.
But their shared letters were very fascinating, and their story sweet.
If you enjoy WWII fiction books that are real and down-to-earth, you’ll want to add this to your list. :)
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*I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher. All opinions in this review are my own.
Posted in Book reviews, Books, Revell Reads

“Living Lies” by Natalie Walters ~ Book Review

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“Living Lies” by Natalie Walters

Harbored Secrets #1

Review copy from publishers/author

My rating: 4 out of 5 Stars

About the Book:

In the little town of Walton, Georgia, everybody knows your name–but no one knows your secret. At least that’s what Lane Kent is counting on when she returns to her hometown with her five-year-old son. Dangerously depressed after the death of her husband, Lane is looking for hope. What she finds instead is a dead body.

Lane must work with Walton’s newest deputy, Charlie Lynch, to uncover the truth behind the murder. But when that truth hits too close to home, she’ll have to decide if saving the life of another is worth the cost of revealing her darkest secret.

Debut novelist Natalie Walters pulls you to the edge of your seat on the first page and keeps you there until the last in this riveting story that will have you believing no one is defined by their past.

 

My Thoughts:

 

I love getting the opportunity to read an author’s debut novel. It feels so special, to be trusted with their first book baby. :)
“Living Lies” is a romantic suspense title, and I thoroughly enjoyed the suspense plot – it was really well-written, and I enjoyed seeing how the whole thing played out and worked together in the end.  That thread was my favorite for sure.
The characters themselves were great, and nicely written. I appreciate how  Lane dealt with depression and anxiety, and that message of the book was definitely handled very well and with care.
The romance didn’t really ‘click’ for me, personally. Not that the two characters weren’t good for each other – they were, and I certainly didn’t dislike them as a couple. I don’t really know why I wasn’t getting engaged in the romance thread. Sometimes it felt a little like insta-love but it wasn’t exactly like that because the main character had some things she felt she needed to overcome.
Charlie was a fantastic guy. I loved how patient he was. And little Noah was a cutie. Also, I had a soft spot for Miguel. His character was really well-written.
The story flowed so nicely, and was an enjoyable read to be sure.
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*I received a review copy of this book from the author/publisher; all opinions in my review are my own.