Without the love of books the richest man is poor, but endowed with this treasure the poorest man is rich. –Leon Gutterman

Friday, September 25, 2009

Blog Book Tour--An Eye for an Eye

by Irene Hannon

Take a handsome FBI agent re-introduce him to the still beautiful woman he fell for twenty years ago, add the bumps and bruises and scars that come with maturing and living full lives and you have a wonderful romance. Add an atypical sniper after one of them and you have great suspense.

An Eye for an Eye
was a marvelous blend of fast-paced action and a quiet and mature romance. Romantic suspense--an interesting blend. Just right for keeping me awake later than I needed to be more than a few nights because I couldn't leave the characters (really me) hanging.

Emily Lawson is the beautiful psychiatrist; a young widow with a lonely and broken heart. Mark Sanders is the rugged FBI agent recovering from a hostage incident where he was injured and a teen was killed. An unexpected meeting reunites them and the sparks they knew as teens still smolder.

Then there is the less than average attempted murderer who wants to kill one of them. But the question is which one? Irene Hannon leads the reader on a roller-coaster chase to catch the killer and keep both Jack and Emily alive.

Thoughtfully researched and written, Ms. Hannon gives the reader characters that are easy to become attached to. The characters journeys of faith are also interesting. Fear of loss, choosing forgiveness, and accepting personal weakness were all dealt with. Most touching to me were the reminders that no one can totally control life and the circumstances we find ourselves in. A strong faith in God can create peace even in the darkest moments.

An Eye for an Eye, book two in The Heroes of Quantico series is a great stand alone read--no need for reading Book One, Against All Odds--but I'm off to look for it! (Ms. Hannon actually notes in the Acknowledgments that An Eye for an Eye was written first.) The book is available from booksellers and Revell/Baker Publishing, who kindly provide me with the opportunity to read it. Book Three, In Harm's Way in on the horizon.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Fall Into Reading 2009--At the Goal Post

My favorite season is autumn, time for turning leaves, turning the air conditioner off, turning a few pages of some wonderful books. Time for Katrina's Fall Into Reading 2009.

I've done this with varying success twice before in 2007 and 2008 and had a blast. There's something about having a goal and at least attaining part of it. Being a book addict is consuming sometimes. I have a habit of getting distracted from my original list.

This year I thought I might pick a limited list and just add to it as the days go on. As I stood in front of my burgeoning "To Be Read" SHELF I had to fight the urge to list all the books on there. I see & smell books and reason just flies out the window. What can I say?

So this is my "limited list" for 2009:

Out to Canaan by Jan Karon

Karon's books are always fresh and like a vacation in the town I've wanted to visit since I read her first book--At Home in Mitford. I'm sure I'll fly through this one, just as I've done with the predecessors.




Herbs and Apples by Helen Hooven Santmeyer

Santmeyer became one of my favorite authors nearly twenty years ago when I found her huge novel "...And Ladies of the Club." Within the last year, I've run across a couple more of her less published books and am glad for the chance to read more.



Bygones by Kim Vogel Sawyer

Stories of the Amish--the "Plain Folk" always interest me. I received this book a long time ago, read a few very interesting chapters and then for some reason got sidetracked. Time to pick it up again and finish it.




Armageddon Summer by Jane Yolen and Bruce Coville

Roo and I are reading books with themes including: futuristic projections, overpopulation, post-apocalyptic societies, dystopian/utopian societies. This caught my eye and I wanted to pre-read it before I handed it off to him. I've always been a fan of Jane Yolen's varied work and look forward to seeing how this story is handled.



Of Beetles & Angels by Mawi Asgedom

My sister gave me this book quite a while back with high recommendations. The story of this man's journey as a child from war torn east Africa to a Harvard scholar sounds remarkable.




M.C. Higgins, the Greatby Virginia Hamilton

It's hard to go wrong with a Newbery Medal book, although some of the Amazon reviews weren't terrible flattering. I'll reserve judgment until I read this children's literature myself




Ascension (Water Trilogy, Book 1)by Kara Dalkey

Honestly, the beautiful cover art on this book caught my eye. I have the trilogy and am looking forward to this young adult fantasy.



Thanks again to Katrina for her lovely challenge. Check out all the readers, and she has giveaways!! Always a fun thing.

Time to cozy up with tea or coffee and a good book.

I'm double posting my first Fall Into Reading 2009 post on both my blogs, the reviews will be here at Joyful Days Reviews & Recipes.

Fall Into Reading past;

Fall Into Reading 2008

Fall Into Reading 2007

Friday, September 18, 2009

Fall Into Reading 2009

Katrina is hostessing



once again!!

Can you believe it's time for Fall already?

Getting my book list ready. And my computer.

OH!! And of course my BOOKS!!

Blog Book Tour--Silent Savior

by A.J. Gregory

For when you are dry in the desert, for when the flood waters are up to you ears, for when you can't seem to find your candle to light in the darkness...for when God seems silent.

A.J. Gregory says the things you are afraid to say when you go to church, when you talk to your brothers and sisters in Christ over doughnuts in the fellowship hall, when you sit in Bible study, when you confess your sins. Many are able to admit to sin, but few want to admit to wavering faith, to doubt and questions when your heart is raw and you haven't heard a word from the LORD lately.

Have you been told you, "Just don't have enough faith about_____" or there's some "hidden sin" you haven't confessed, or that if you pray this or that prayer or follow just the right doctrine, your prayer request would be answered.

Society has convinced us that we can have it all and it all can be put together packaged and wrapped with a pretty bow and that message has seeped into our "church lives." Do you put on a happy face and answer, "Fine!" when asked how you are? Because a Christian should be happy and fine. But are you?

Gregory's book isn't going to tell you the magic answer to have your prayers all answered by the LORD. Silent Savior isn't going to tell you why you have prayers that haven't been answered. This refreshing and real book will let you know that it is okay to have questions, to ask them out loud and to hang on to the threads of faith when threads are all you have.

From reviews and the publisher:

What do you do when there's not even a still, small voice?

There are times in our lives when it's not just hard to hear God--it's impossible. We've all been there. Knowing on some deeper level that God is present no matter how things look, but still feeling the trickle of doubt. And wondering why the God whose faithfulness is never supposed to fail seems to be turning a giant deaf ear toward us. It's not always like this, but silent seasons are common in the life of any believer.

In Silent Savior, A. J. Gregory navigates that labyrinth of sorrow, pain, angst, and doubt on the way to a soul-deep recognition of God's infinite faithfulness and perpetual, if sometimes silent, presence. And she encourages you to keep believing he's there even when that silence seems deafening.

Endorsements

"Many of us tiptoe around the eggshells of the doubts and questions surrounding an intangible God. Gregory doesn't. And after reading this book, hopefully you won't either, but instead rest in a haven of depth and holy wonder."--Chris Seay, author

"In a beautiful and reflective way, Gregory reminds us we don't have to be embarrassed, afraid, or shocked to find the presence of God's silence in our lives."--Ron Martoia, author

"If you're looking for a book to move your stagnant faith, to stir the dry bones, and to bring truth to your life, you've got the right book."--Michael Franzese, author


Thanks to Revell/Baker Publishing and A.J. Gregory for the opportunity to read this thoughtful book.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Blog Book Tour--Fools Rush In

by Janice Thompson

Janice Thompson certainly likes her weddings! Yes indeed, she does. The first Thompson wedding tale I read was back in 2007, Gone With the Groom, a wedding mystery with a missing groom. Her suspense filled Christian fiction was full of adventure and mayhem.

But Ms. Thompson really caught one of my weaknesses this time, she knows her Dean Martin. Oh yes indeed, she does! And one of my secret weaknesses is Dean Martin's singing. Dino croons the soundtrack of her latest novel, Fools Rush In: Weddings by Bella. Well...I suppose Ol' Blue Eyes sings a supporting backup, but it's Dean who leads the show.

Really, the story is about the very Itallian Bella Rossi and her search for the perfect country and western deejay. Because, you know, Italians and Texas have a lot in common...ummm, do they? Really? Well, maybe more than you'd think.

Bella has inherited the family business...ahem...the family wedding business, that is, and she intends on making it successful. Can a wedding planner who's never had her own wedding make it big designing others' happily ever after dreams? What about Bella's dreams? Will there ever be a wedding bell in her future? What happens when Bella's East-coast family meets the downhome Texas family of D.J, who may or may not be the deejay she's looking for.

Janice Thompson's quirky characters create madcap situations and manage to rely on the LORD at the same time. They are unapologetically Christian and are always ready to share what the LORD has done for them.

My only complaint with the book? Well, Ms. Thompson didn't work in my all time favorite Dean Martin song--Georgia Sunshine. I suppose given the book is about TEXAS and all I can understand. Book One of the Weddings by Bella series was so fun, I'll be on the lookout for Book Two, Swinging on a Star.

My thanks to Ms. Thompson and Revell Books/Baker Publishing for the great time I had with this fun, fast-paced read. Fools Rush In was just released and is available at your favorite bookseller, from Revell Books, a division of Baker Publishing group.