Tuesday, December 6, 2011

The Canary List by Sigmund Brouwer

This was a very interesting story about how evil could infiltrate the Vatican and the Catholic Church in general. I appreciated the true facts that were incorporated into the story along with the various quotes and further reading given in the back. I liked that the story was told from the viewpoint of a complete skeptic about God but he was drawn into this whole spiritual battle which he did not believe in. I enjoyed to various characters that were apart of the story. Even the minor roll character of Nanna was completely lovable.  I personally think the ending was brilliant. It brought full circle the whole point of presenting the two quotes in the beginning. The first being Eph. 6:12 acknowledging we have a bigger battle going on. The second being C.S. Lewis saying people are either completely fascinated by the existence of demons or don't believe in them at all and both are very dangerous. The whole book seemed to deal with each ends of the spectrum and the end presented both viewpoints. For me, it made this book go from a 4 star story to a definite 5 star.

I received this book free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Grace Effect by Larry Alex Taunton

First of all, I thought it was a great book and I loved reading Sascha's story. I was drawn into the emotions of what it must have been like to go through the frustrations of dealing with such a corrupt country. I appreciated the history provided to better understand where Russia and the Ukraine are coming from and it truly is a sad story. I though Mr. Taunton did a great job showing us how grace can change people. At some points I was having trouble connecting the two but separately I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I enjoyed the interaction between him and Christopher Hitchens as well as the viewpoints of other athiests around the world. I think this story is well worth the read.

I received this book free from booksneeze.com in exchange for my review

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Mercy Come Morning

Mercy Come Morning is a tale of Krista who has always had a strained relationship with her mother. Now her mother is on her death bed and Krista comes to say her good byes and seek healing and forgiveness. It was a touching story and I certainly can see how this would be a great read for someone who has a parent suffering from Alzheimer's. There is a lot of pain and frustration for the person suffering the Alzheimers as well as the children who endure with the parents. Ms. Bergren does a great job describing these characters and you feel drawn to them. I was glad to see the healing and forgiveness in the end.
I received this book for free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Dreams of Joy by Lisa See

I so enjoy Lisa See's books I was quite excited her new book was out. This is the follow up to Shanghai girls which I read probably 2 years ago so as I was reading this book I had to stretch my memory quite a bit. I thought this book was so fascinating. I loved learning about life in the farming communes during the Great Leap Forward in China. The communes worked so well in the beginning. It's so sad to see how the corrupt leaders were hoarding food for themselves as the workers were just dying on the side of the road from starvation. If they would have let the farmers do their job the way they know how the great famine could have been prevented. I enjoyed reading from the perspective of both Joy and Pearl since they had such different upbringings. I highly recommend this book.

Restless in Carolina

This book is about Bridget who is a widow but also part of a formerly wealthy family. The older generations were believed to have received this wealth through dishonest measures and the Uncle now wants to make restitution to those the family had cheated in the past. Bridget is looking for a buyer for the family estate and quickly finds two buyers who seem not only interested in the estate but her as well. I liked the story well enough. It was an easy read however there were parts that were choppy and sentences that didn't make sense to me. There were so many characters to follow I had to think about which cousin is in the picture now. I did like the story line of Bridget and J.C. I thought he was a well developed character. All in all, I say this book is fine. I wouldn't rush out to read it but would be a good summer easy read.
I received this book free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

The Crossing by Serita Jakes

This was an interesting story about the effects of PTSD and what could potentially happen if you don't deal with it. When a group of high school students were on their way home from a football game, a masked gunman entered the bus and shot 3 people killing one of the teachers on board. The murder was never solved and when the case is re-opened 10 years later, it causes emotions to roll. The only part that seemed unbelievable to me was the fact that the high-profile preachers daughter would not have received counseling after such a traumatic experience. This story was well done and is a real eye-opener to the effects of traumatic experiences when they are not dealt with.

I received this book for free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ascent From Darkness

I will admit I was not sure I wanted to read this book. I don't like to read about evil spirits and demonic forces but the fact that it was a true story of one man's life made me want to continue on. I am so glad I read this book. It was very well done. Michael tells his story in a way that you get the severity of what was going on in his life without getting the gory details. He makes it clear the depth of his devotion to Satan and the battle that raged within him. I'm amazed at how his "mission" was to go to churches and Bible studies and disrupt them with difficult questions and basically just try to lead everyone astray. Another great reason why we need to be on guard spiritually at all times. I was thanking God by the end that this man has been freed from the bondage of Satan and that he now is a follower of Christ. The appendix also sheds some great light on the story of Michael from the perspective of those around him. I love how God is using him and his testimony mightily today! I find his passion inspiring and the fact that he can't not share the love of God with everyone he meets an encouragement and challenge to the rest of us.
I received this book free from booksneeze.com in exchange for my review.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Scroll

The Scroll is a futuristic prophecy type novel that takes place in Israel. 3 distinguished archaeologists are brought on a secret assignment. As the novel unravels, the archaeologists realize the assignment is much more than meets the eye. I enjoyed the book and found it interesting to go through the details of a archaeology dig sight. I also enjoyed the end times Israel angle. I thought it kind of ended abruptly and quite frankly towards the end I thought it was going to be a series but they did wrap it up in the end. It was a good read.

I received this book free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Friday, September 16, 2011

radical together by David Platt

I just finished reading Radical Together and I think it was a fantastic little book. It was straight forward and to the point. I will say that I haven't read Radical yet but I will after reading this one. The concepts are difficult to read about yet the truth that rings through is undeniable. I think every follower of Christ needs to be wrestling with the types of questions Mr. Platt puts before us in this book. I like that he did a follow up to the original that has numerous examples of people who have decided to do something "radical" and the change its made in their lives and community. I am challenged by this book and that seems to be the point. 
I received this book free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Friday, September 2, 2011

A Sound Among the Trees

I will admit I was confused when I first started reading it because I didn't read the back and I was assuming it took place during the civil war. As I began, I was thinking this certainly doesn't sound like a wedding during that time frame. Then I looked at the back cover. That made things make much more sense! I enjoyed the character development of this book and was certainly intrigued but I was confused with the whole ghost thing. I get it in concept but I was really glad it was all explained in the end or else I would not have come to the correct conclusion. I enjoyed the story of Susannah and loved the history of the house. I thought this was well worth the read. I appreciated the discussion questions at the end as that helped me understand the feeling behind the book.
I received this book free from blogging for books in exchange for my review.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

River of Time Series by Lisa T. Bergren

I've read a few of Lisa Bergren's books before and absolutely loved them so when I found this series I was looking forward to getting started. This book series is fantastic. I was thoroughly caught up in the lives of Gabi and her sister, Lia. They find a time portal that transfer's them back into Medieval Italy and they are immediately immersed in action. I enjoyed reading about how a modern day teenager would have to figure out life without modern ammenities. This series has everything in it including battles, castles, love and time travel.

In Waterfall the adventure begins. Gabi and Lia find themselves in Medieval Italy and are separated from the beginning. Gabi is found by Marcello, the handsome knight. His family takes her in and assists her in finding her sister.
Cascade begins with the girls back in modern day Italy but they convince their mom to travel through the portal as well. The adventures continue as more battles ensue between rival castles in Italy.
Torrent is the final book where the battle rages on and they have to deal with the possibility of the bubonic plague coming.
I highly recommend this series to anyone who wants to read a book you don't want to put down!

Friday, August 19, 2011

Inside Threat

This is the final book of the Riley Covington thrillers. Riley is a former special ops turned pro football star but when the woman he loves is taken hostage by a terrorist group he forces his way back to his special ops friends where he comes up with a plan to get her out. I have read the first novel in this series "Monday Night Jihad" so I had some background on how these novels began. I haven't read the second or third so I have missed some of the thrills and the growth of Riley and Khadi's relationship but you get the gist of it throughout the book. I enjoyed the suspense in the book but I have to say it irritates me when it takes half the book to set up what you know from the back cover description is going to happen. Aside from that, i thought it was well written and keeps you engaged for the duration of the book. I would start with book one so you can enjoy the whole series.
I received this book free from Tyndale in exchange for my review.