Thursday, February 28, 2019

Code of Valor (Blue Justice #3)


Title:  Code of Valor (Blue Justice #3)

Author:  Lynette Eason

Pages:  336

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Revell

My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.

Detective Brady St. John has decided to spend his vacation in a cabin on a lake.  He needs the time to recharge and read his Bible.  On his second day, however, his plans are drastically altered.  He hears a woman scream, runs to the lake and sees her struggling with an armed man in a boat.  She manages to topple into the water but can’t swim as her hands are bound.  Brady jumps in to rescue her while the armed man escapes.  He soon finds out that the man was trying to kill Emily Chastain, a financial crimes investigator.  Later that night, the killer returns to finish the job.  Brady helps Emily escape once more, but he fears things are only going to get worse.  Emily has no idea why someone would want to kill her.

Emily’s best friend Is an investigative reporter who has disappeared.  Emily and her friend are as close as sisters, and Emily is desperate to find her friend.  Is one of her stories the reason for her disappearance?  Emily is worried about her friend and now she is on the run with Brady trying to avoid the killer’s next attempt.  Brady’s brothers help him protect Emily.  They are also in law enforcement.  Then, something happens that causes Emily to surrender to the killer while trying to hold on long enough for Brady to rescue her again, but she doesn’t expect what occurs next.

Sound interesting and exciting?  Well, it is!  This is one of those books I read in one sitting.  I was turning the pages as fast as I could to see what was around the next corner.  There was plenty of action to keep me stuck to my chair.  I like the way the author works in faith in the lives of her characters so that it is an integral part of who they are, but it is not over the top.  The suspense and tension were riveting!  I can’t wait for the fourth and final book in the series that is to be released in August 2019.

Always Look Tiwice (Book #2) sequel to Never Let Go!

Here's a sneak peek!

At the advice of her therapist, homicide survivor Harper Reynolds has traded her job as a crime scene photographer for a more peaceful life taking photographs of the natural world. But her hopes for a life surrounded by the serenity of the outdoors are dashed when she inadvertently captures a murder being committed in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. She flees the scene in fear--and loses the camera.  

#alwayslooktwice #uncommonjustice #coverreveal #comingsoon #october1 #romanticsuspense #booklove #mustread #preorder  
@elizabethgoddardauthor


Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Justice Delivered (A Memphis Cold Case #4)


Title:  Justice Delivered (A Memphis Cold Case #4)

Author:  Patricia Bradley

Pages:  368

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Revell

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars.

What an exciting novel in the series!  The other novels in the series include:  Justice Delayed, Justice Betrayed, and Justice Betrayed.  Each novel may be a stand alone but reading them all makes this perhaps last installment richer for readers.  In Justice Delivered, my heart pounded as I read about women being caught and trafficked, along with a character dealing with fears after being freed.  The female character was named Jaz by her captor.  Some women would go out to the streets, offering others a way out.

Jaz not only had fears to overcome but wondered if she would ever be free of watching her back.  What Jaz faces, with the help of others, and her determination to see that no one else suffers as she did brings such a heart-gripping story.  Plus, readers will empathize with the character as she learns to forgive those who did wrong and heals from multiple attempts on her life.

Patricia Bradley offers her audiences a very suspense-filled tale that will take readers on an exciting ride!  The heart of the novel includes threads of defeating fear and wrestling through living a life of forgiveness even when it is so very difficult.  I loved how Jaz becomes a conqueror no matter how many times she is hurt or knocked down.  Plus, I love how Patricia Bradley takes readers through dark times to ones of hope and a future filled with promises!

Read all the novels of the series as they are exciting, faith-filled and suspense to the max!

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Secrets at Cedar Cabin (A Lavender Tides Novel #3)


Title:  Secrets at Cedar Cabin (A Lavender Tides Novel #3)

Author:  Colleen Coble

Pages:  352

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Thomas Nelson

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars.

The Lavender Tides series has very engaging and entertaining stories that include the first two books titled, The View of Rainshadow Bay and The House at Saltwater Point.  I think to appreciate the genius of the story is to start with the first book and read all three.  The Secrets at Cedar Cabin really brings an exciting conclusion to the mystery introduced in The View of Rainshadow Bay along with such a variety of characters. 

In this third installment, readers will enjoy Bailey Fleming’s character.  It was very intriguing how Bailey lives her life knowing one mother and moving all the time through her character’s experiences.  Some facets of the many threads regarding Bailey, Grayson and Shauna revealed in the first two books yet in the end of this third book more are revealed that tie up the mystery.

Bailey’s life is radically changed with the information about who she really is and what happened decades ago.  Bailey believes no one knows where she came from and can hide at a cabin reinventing herself.  The truth unravels when FBI agent Lance Phoenix starts poking in her life.  There are thrills as well as danger that is faced by many characters that seem to hint to who is the main culprit to what happened to Bailey, the mother she thought she knew and the man to whom she was once married.

The novel is riveting and climactic and will entertain readers for hours.  Collen Coble knows how to grab a reader and pull them into her books and keep them there till the very end!  I have read a lot of her books and recommend those looking for a solid story, believable characters, faith, romance, suspense and so much more to look Collen’s way!  You won’t be disappointed and I dare say you’ll want to read more coming from her pen in the near future!                 

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. 

Monday, February 25, 2019

A Bound Heart


Title:  A Bound Heart

Author:  Laura Frantz

Pages:  407 (ARC)

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Revell

My rating is 4 out of 5 stars.

Lark MacDougall is descended from Scottish aristocracy, but over time her clan has been assimilated or killed so there are few left.  She serves as the apothecary for clan MacLeish, whose laird she grew up with.  Magnus MacLeish is a lawyer as well as head of his clan of over 300 people.  They depend on him to settle disputes and provide leadership.  He is aware of the smuggling that is going on but does nothing about it as he knows his clan needs the supplies.  These goods are needed for them to survive as they supplement what can’t be produced themselves.  Most of the islanders are involved in unloading the smuggled goods and must always be on the watch of the authorities.  Rory MacPherson is the captain of the smuggling ship and thinks he and Lark should marry, then head to America.

Due to dire circumstances Lark, Rory and Magnus are arrested and sent to Virginia as indentured servants, with Magnus making a further journey to Jamaica.  Lark boards the ship and within days becomes mother to an infant when his caretaker dies.  Now, Lark is headed for a new country, in a new job, indentured for two years with an infant.  Lark adjusts well to plantation life.  She remains in the role of apothecary and tends to her herbs and plants and bees.  She gives what help she can to the slaves, which sets her against the factor.  Magnus does well in his job as manager of a sugar, tobacco and cocoa plantation in Jamaica.  What purpose does God have in separating them from their homeland and each other?  Will they ever see each other again?

When I want to read historical fiction, Laura Frantz is one of my go-to authors.  Her characters are written with depth and are ones I can identify with.  The scenes of Scotland were so vivid I could smell the heather and peat fire.  Lark and Magnus had such reliance on the Lord in every day of their lives and were able to surrender to His will in the face of terrible circumstances.  I can’t wait to see where and when her next novel will take place!

Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one or more of the products or services mentioned above for free in the hope that I would mention it on my blog.  Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.  I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255. “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Friday, February 22, 2019

Dangerous Sanctuary (Love Inspired Suspense)


Title:  Dangerous Sanctuary (Love Inspired Suspense)

Author:  Shirlee McCoy

Pages:  224

Year:  March 2019

Publisher:  Love Inspired Suspense

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars.

Have you ever looked at a stack of books, shelves of books or even a list of books you want to read when all of a sudden it is like the book reaches out and grabs your attention?  Well, it happens to me all the time and here is one of those times!  The moment I opened the cover I was immediately drawn into the action taking place in the pages.

Two FBI members, Radley Tumberg and Honor Remington, are enmeshed finding out what is happening at a place deep in the mountains of Vermont.  Honor is the lead female character who, when located by Radley, has memory issues and severe burns to both her hands.  Even trying to leave the compound proves dangerous and even deadly!

Throughout the book just when Honor thinks the threats to her life are over, it turns out not to be true.  I enjoyed the animal in the story too and his personality because he is a pot-bellied pig.  There are family issues and obstacles that may keep Honor from living her dream of marriage and more.  This is a very good novel that won’t take much time to read and enjoy before picking up another book!  Readers beware this tale will keep you glued while turning pages quickly to discover what occurs!

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

The Reluctant Warrior (High Sierra Sweethearts #2)


Title:  The Reluctant Warrior (High Sierra Sweethearts #2)

Author:  Mary Connealy

Pages:  e-book

Year:  2018

Publisher:  Bethany

My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.

Cameron Scott has spent most of his life in the military.  Now, that he is a civilian he has a difficult time not ordering people around and expecting their immediate obedience, including his toddler daughter.  He hasn’t seen her since her birth as he was serving in the cavalry.  His wife died, leaving their daughter with relatives.  He has returned to collect his daughter and settle on a ranch.  However, he is trapped in the mountains near Lake Tahoe due to a blizzard and must remain there all winter.  His daughter is afraid of his gruff manner and cries when he comes near.  She has developed a love, however, for Gwen Harkness and views her as her mother.

Gwen loves Maddie Sue and her little cousin Ronnie, whose parents were murdered while traveling west.  She has been raising them for several months, waiting on Cameron to arrive.  During that time, she has become more and more protective of them and really doesn’t want Cameron to take them away.  She and Cameron are at loggerheads just about every moment and can agree to disagree about everything.  Gwen finally realizes that she can’t keep children who aren’t hers no matter how much she loves them.  She sees the hurt in Cameron’s eyes when the children cry as he nears.  Gwen decides she will help Cameron win over the children.  She gives him advice that he actually listens to and begins to slowly find common ground with the children.  Before too much time has passed, there is an incident that almost costs them their lives.  The discover someone is out to kill Gwen’s sister Deb and her husband.  Gwen lives with them.  Cameron and the other men set out to track the killer more than once, but he keeps getting away.  What will happen for Cameron and Gwen when the snow thaws?  Will they ever catch the killer?

I absolutely enjoyed this story from beginning to end!  The sassy Gwen isn’t afraid to tell grouchy Cameron what his problems are and how to fix them.  Cameron while gruff is a fine protector and does indeed love his daughter and nephew and wants them to love him in return.  Gwen realizes she has not been acting Christlike toward Cameron at a nudge from the Holy Spirit and softens her approach toward him.  I look forward to the third book coming out soon.  This is a great historical western!

Tuesday, February 19, 2019

Firethorn (Discarded Heroes #4)


Title:  Firethorn (Discarded Heroes #4)

Author:  Ronie Kendig

Pages:  403

Year:  2018

Publisher:  Task Force Press

My rating:  5 out of 5

Each novel thus far in the series has been edge of your seat suspense and thrills!  The last novel is just like the others in that it focuses on one member of the Nightshade Team and reveals something about the character.  There is an element of a love interest as well.  We meet the man who has skills that make him a valued member of the team and they call him Legend.

It seems that someone very powerful wants to make Legend’s life a living Hell and rips everything away from him.  Legend is in jail, stripped of everything and in a cell that is small but seems even smaller because Legend is a huge man.  While he is in jail, the team is decimated it seems.  For some nefarious reason they are sent to different locations to suffer, big time torture!

Now Legend is free and sets out to get back each member of Nightshade no matter where it takes him and what dangers will attempt to keep him from completing that mission.  The twists and turns in the plot give the reader a plethora of possible outcomes to think about and ponder.  He meets a woman whose skills make him proud of her but also begin to break down the walls of his heart.

Audiences will find it hard to take a break from reading because it is nonstop action!  Plus knowing there has to be a conclusion of some sort that shows who is behind all the painful hurt inflicted on the team and their families made me stay up late to find the answer.  Once again, Ronie Kendig gives a series that reveals the heroes of the military and their families.

I know that in the future I will once again read this exciting series, but for now I am sharing them with a friend.  Grab a book, read and share it with another reader, then maybe over coffee share your thoughts about the books.  There is a novella titled, Lygos, which is the last book to read and though little it was very exciting!

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility.

Friday, February 15, 2019

Wolfsbane (Discarded Heroes #3)


Title:  Wolfsbane (Discarded Heroes #3)

Author:  Ronie Kendig

Pages:  440

Year:  2018

Publisher:  Task Force Press

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

This third novel in the series focuses not only on the black ops team but on one of the members known as Canyon.  Canyon’s life has been anything but gold even though his teammates called him Midas.   Canyon becomes entangled with an Army Demolitions expert named Danielle Roark.  Not only is there a rivalry between Canyon and his brother for Roark’s attention, now Canyon must take Roark back to where she escaped from to prove her evidence is in fact a reality.

Now, back in the jungle, with enemies all around, separated from other help and in pain what are Canyon and Danielle to do?  What Danielle learns through her return to her prior place of captivity from certain revelations will most definitely grab readers attention and emotions!

Ronie shows how human a believer is when one of the characters fails to run from temptation and how the ripples from that moment spread, causing division in many relationships.  The suspense in the story is high octane.  Trust me, it was hard to take a break and go to sleep at night!  The one strong theme throughout the story is God’s forgiveness and the restoration God can bring into a life when one repents, and yields control of one’s life into God’s hands.

I am now reading Firethorn, which is the fourth book in the series and it is just as riveting as the other books have been.  So, if you need stories that are outstanding, here is a series you won’t regret reading or forget anytime soon!

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Digitalis (Discarded Heroes #2)


Title:  Digitalis (Discarded Heroes #2)

Author:  Ronnie Kendig

Pages:

Year:

Publisher:  Task Force Press

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars                          

We meet the main characters in the first book, Nightshade, which also gives the background as to why this team exists.  The first book was absolutely enjoyable and had high tension with lots of adventure.  For example, one of the men on the team is separated form his wife, and he thinks she is home safe in America only to learn just how close to the danger she in fact is and why.  Along with threads of men who risk their lives for others, there are romance, secrets, faith and a whole lot more!

Now in book two, while there are the similar elements as book one, the characters change little and the op they become embroiled in is unbelievably engaging!  The thought that kept going through my head as I read was how potent the story is, and the adventure is ramped up!  Some of the story happens in Israel and then at one of the men’s home, which I found captivating.  One of the reasons was due to Digitalis’ love interest being a woman of Jewish descent.

There are threads in the story that were surprising and took my breath away!  I don’t want to spoil it for anyone by revealing the specifics, but you don’t want to miss the way the author brings about a heart touching scene in Israel.  The wrestling of Digitalis’ faith was very palpable throughout the book.  I loved the father in their father and son relationship.

Piper is a lead female character who wasn’t in the first book.  Now she is of interest to Cowboy and their interactions are precious and funny.  I love how the missions the team goes on don’t always work out perfectly or that someone doesn’t get hurt; the fact that they do adds realism to what occurs I imagine to those who serve and their families.

So, if you like military suspense and thrills, here is a great series to read!  I guarantee you won’t be able to put the book down but will be drawn in and not let go until the end!  I am to the third installment titled, Wolfsbane, and I will share that story with you soon!  Till then enjoy Nightshade, the first book in the series and then Digitalis!

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Nightshade (Discarded Heroes #1)


Title:  Nightshade (Discarded Heroes #1)

Author:  Ronnie Kendig

Pages:  338

Year:  2017

Publisher:  Task Force Press

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

There are many wonderful stories written by this author just waiting to be opened and enjoyed.  Here is the first in a series about those who served in the military and came back to the U.S., though not home.  In using the genre of fiction, readers will be grabbed by the tension, suspension and never-ending action of heroes who go where they are sent.  These soldiers have been hand-picked, and their identity is supposed to be known by a few though as readers will see that might not be the case after all.

It’s a well-crafted tale of being chosen to serve the country again though if caught they will be disavowed by the country they serve.  I read the book in short order because it was so engaging and suspense filled!  Plus, I love those who serve in the military as well as the family they leave to do so.  While it is true that not all have happy ever after endings, readers can begin to understand why as the characters use their skills in a setting far removed from everyday life here.  They also come home at times unable to reintegrate into society or their marriages.

Ronnie Kendig’s characters are heroes who fight to live and fight to help others live.  Sometimes the costs are seen on the outside though they are very real as one character named Sydney learned both at home and while traveling abroad.  There is hope infused in the story many times and there is mention of a ministry to help soldiers, through a passing character.

The novel caused my heart to race and I couldn’t put the book down!  I stayed up late one night to finish the book because I was so involved in the story, and I wanted to see how it was going to end.  If you’re looking for a book that really grabs you the moment you open the cover, look no further.  There are three other novels in the series that I hope to read and share with you very soon.  Until then, read on!

American Omens by Travis Thrasher

Tuesday, February 12, 2019

American Omens Author: Travis Thrasher


Title:  American Omens

Author:  Travis Thrasher

Pages:  352

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Multnomah

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars.

The past weekend I spent time enjoying the story of American Omens.  The subtitle is “The Coming Fight for Faith,” which seems to already be a part of American society today.  As I progressed through the tale, I became enamored with Cheyenne’s character.  In the futuristic setting, we see “Chey” (Cheyenne) working for a company that has developed highly technical software.  She is one smart cookie!  However, Chey enters her workplace one day and she is handed a note.  She reads it later for fear someone else might see it.

The book was hard to put down because the plot thickens, the danger heightens, and it wasn’t hard to imagine fiction being reality.  I was turning pages for hours until my eyes got tired, but I wanted to read on.  Why are churches closed?  Why are people seeming to disappear without any concern from others? Is the man who is revealing God’s plan to a select few at first a plausible character?  I will answer only the one question about the prophet as that character is very mysterious and intriguing to say the least.

Christians in the novel are forced to live life off the grid but challenged to share their beliefs with others, knowing that comes with a cost.  There were twists and turns in the plot that kept me engrossed and thinking, plus there are Scripture references and a quote from Oswald Chambers that I really was impacted by.  On page 161, it reads as follows: “Seeing is never believing we interpret what we see in the light of what we believe.  Faith is confidence in God before you see God emerging; therefore, the nature of faith is that it must be tried.”

So, when you read the novel, don’t be surprised if something stands out to you that stirs your mind, heart and soul.  The timing of the release of the novel is providential in that it seems like a wake-up call to pay attention, decide for or against being a disciple of Christ, and living that faith out before the world.  Here is a great story to read and share with others, perhaps even discuss it with someone!

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. 

Monday, February 11, 2019

Breach of Trust


Title:  Breach of Trust

Author:  Rachel Dylan

Pages:  304

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Bethany

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

What a fantastic and thrilling conclusion to the Atlanta Justice series!  The story focus on Mia Shaw who practices corporate litigation.  When Mia goes to Chase’s apartment looking forward to a celebratory dinner with him, she instead finds him brutally murdered.  Now her world has been turned upside down and Mia’s faith is really being tested as she grapples through the aftermath.

In addition to dealing with Chase’s murder, Mia is tapped to take over one of Chase’s biggest cases but finding what she needs proves to be difficult at best.  Throughout the novel there are continuing threats on Mia’s life while handling a major case, grieving, and wrestling with her nightmares.  Mia is a woman who is top notch in her field and is used to taking charge of her life, however with recent events Mia is finding that a real challenge.

Mia is a tough cookie, but she has a heart of gold toward people.  Mia is a young believer in the Lord and her faith is challenged.  However, she has other friends whose faith and knowledge help her walk through the valley one day at a time.  Mia has dated before, but the men seemed to be unable to care for her in a way she longs for regardless of her mother’s teachings about life, men and God.

The whole series is engaging because it deals with the legal arena, but more so it shows how faith can be lived out in day-to-day interactions with other people and situations.  If you read all three books, you will discover who Mia’s friends are and enjoy their stories as well.  Rachel Dylan is a blooming author so watch for whatever she plans to share with audiences sometime in the future.

Until then, read the first novel titled, Deadly Proof followed by Lone Witness before you enjoy A Breach of Trust.  You don’t want to miss the suspenseful tales in this series!

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. 

Friday, February 8, 2019

Murder in Disguise


Title:  Murder in Disguise (A Preston Barclay Mystery #3)

Author:  Donn Taylor

Pages:  301

Year:  2017

Publisher:  Lamplighter Mysteries

My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.

Press and Mara have survived two dangerous mystery investigations together, even though Press claims he “just teaches history”.  Now, Press has gotten a job at a college to teach a couple of summer classes.  One of his good friends from his own college days is a department chairman of the college and was instrumental in Press getting this summer job.  Mara has a teaching friend at the same college, so she comes for a visit.

When Press arrives at the college, he first pays a visit to his friend’s wife to offer condolences.  It seems his friend recently committed suicide.  Press just can’t wrap his mind around his grounded Christian friend taking his own life, but all the evidence points to this being the case.  His friend’s wife doesn’t believe he killed himself and has been spreading the word that once Press arrives, he will prove that her husband was murdered.  Press doesn’t want to get involved in another murder investigation, but she pleads with him to just meet with the detective in charge of her husband’s case.  Press agrees.

Press is not welcomed at the college as the new department chairman wants to create a very liberal curriculum, discarding most traditional and/or Christian values classes.  The classes Press teaches are conservative and traditional, just like Press.  He notices a couple of minor anomalies in the investigation.  He is warned by several people to let things alone and not to stir the pot, but once Press gets his teeth into something, he won’t let go.  With Mara’s help, Press seeks to discover the truth.

This is one of my favorite mystery series, and I hope the author has many more to come!  The witty remarks and puns put a smile on my face and made me chuckle out loud.  The dialogue is snappy and there is enough going on in the story to keep readers thoroughly interested and entertained.  I also liked the inclusion of the side story of Press’s daughter and her on-campus fight for her religious freedom rights.  These mysteries are definitely ones to check out and ones not to be missed!

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Darkwater Secrets (Darkwater Inn #1)


Title:  Darkwater Secrets (Darkwater Inn #1)

Author:  Robin Caroll

Pages:  272

Year:  2018

Publisher:  Gilead Publishing

My rating is 3 out of 5 stars.

Adelaide Fountaine is the general manager of an old, but beautiful and classy hotel.  A pharmaceutical company is having a several-day meeting with their sales force at the hotel.  A guest misses check-out time, won’t answer the room telephone or knocking on the door, so the door is forced open and a grisly discovery is made.  The guest in room 219 has been murdered.  Adelaide’s childhood friend, Beau Savoie is called to the scene as he is a homicide detective.  As Beau investigates, Adelaide hopes he won’t discover information she has about the victim.

Beau Savoie has been in love with Adelaide for years but has kept his feelings to himself.  He now will be in close proximity to Adelaide as he investigates the murder.  Ever since she came back to New Orleans after college, she has seemed more distant.  Would she even think of him in a romantic way?  He wonders if there is anything going on between her and Dmitri, the hotel owner’s son, who is being groomed to take over as CEO of the hotel.  As Beau questions those in the hotel at the time of the murder and looks into the victim’s life, he learns his victim is far from innocent.

This was an average mystery for me.  The faith element in the story is there, but not in-your-face.  Rape is part of the story, so that may preclude some from reading the story.  Voodoo is also a dark part of the story, not the main element, but it is present.  The romantic angle was so-so but seemed to drag a bit.  The story could have used a little more action in my opinion.  I thought the way the murderer was treated seemed almost like he was a hero, minimizing the fact that he killed someone in vigilante style justice.  I am unsure if I will continue with the series or not.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

The Forgiving Jar (Prayer Jar #2)


Title: The Forgiving Jar (Prayer Jar #2) 

Author:  Wanda Brunstetter

Pages:  320         

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Shiloh Press

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

In the first novel, we meet a couple of female characters who have had tough lives.  They live with broken hearts and dreams every day.  One of them is named Michelle.  Although she played herself off to a set of Amish grandparents as their long-lost granddaughter, she now returns to set the record straight.  But will the woman who really is their granddaughter, Sara, ever forgive her?  Will the Amish community embrace her or shut her out?

Sara cannot understand how her grandparents so easily forgive Michelle.  Sara wants them to make her leave the house, but will they do it?  Michelle is contemplating and praying about changing from the English world and becoming Amish.  Sara is determined to put distance between her and Michelle while jealousy seems to be the main emotion in her heart.

Throughout the novel, this tension between Sara and Michelle is mounting.  Reading how each of the girls handles their fragile relationship is eye opening.  The story is more than about forgiveness.  I found it to be            about discovering what true love looks like in life.  Not from other characters but from God.  Can the various characters discern how real and loving God is? 

In no way does the author make it seem cheesy or easy for the various heart struggles the girls go through, which I thought was brilliant.  It made the tale more believable and enjoyable.  There were no quick fixes or easy ways to reconcile the two girls, but with others who known the Lord and His Word plus showing them His love, perhaps Sara and Michelle can move beyond the obstacles of the heart.

The third book titled, The Healing Jar, is set to be released in August 2019.  To thoroughly enjoy what I suspect to be an exciting conclusion to the series, please read The Prayer Jar followed by The Forgiving Jar.  You won’t regret it!

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. 

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Never Let Go (Uncommon Justice #1)


Title:  Never Let Go (Uncommon Justice #1)

Author:  Elizabeth Goddard

Pages:  368

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Revell

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars

Willow Anderson was raised by her grandfather after she lost both her parents in an accident.  He taught her about faith as well as being a forensic genealogist.  Now, Willow has recently lost her grandfather.   With only one case remaining open, she plans to notify the person and close the business.  That is, until her life is threatened, and danger lurks in the shadows!

With her grandfather already having asked Austin McKade to assist in this cold case, Willow must ask Austin to just leave and stay away.  Why?  Willow and Austin have a past, and with her life always in danger she wants to handle it alone even though Austin has the skills to help solve the cold case.  But will either of them live to do so?

These characters are trying to keep each other from breaking their heart again, and yet work together as her grandfather wanted.  Throughout the novel, Elizabeth Goddard weaves various threads of the 20-year-old cold case together in such a way that putting the book down became almost impossible!  There were times I thought I figured out what or who the nefarious players were, but when a twist in the plot was introduced, I started rethinking my guess!

The story is not just about a cold case or an ex-flame but also about revealing how each of the past years of life experience affects the present.  The novel was very enjoyable to read, and I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough!  What is also fun is waiting for the second novel to be released in Fall of 2019.  Grab a copy, read and share it with family and friends so you’re ready when the next installment comes out!

Note:  I received a complimentary copy for an honest review of this book.  The opinions shared in this review are solely my responsibility. 

Monday, February 4, 2019

Murder Mezzo Forte (A Preston Barclay Mystery #2)


Title:  Murder Mezzo Forte (A Preston Barclay Mystery #2)

Author:  Donn Taylor

Pages:  289

Year:  2016

Publisher:  Lamplighter Fiction

My rating is 5 out of 5 stars.

Professor Preston Barclay is attending a faculty gathering when one of the other professors asks to speak to him afterward.  She has some information about them possibly losing their jobs.  Press lives to teach history.  He still gets an adrenaline high when he teaches and can’t imagine doing anything else.  His wife passed away three years ago and since that time, Press has suffered from musical hallucinations.  He hears music that no one else can hear, and it usually pertains to what situation or conversation he is having currently.  He has romantic leanings toward one of the newer professors on campus, Mara Thornton.  She is a former Wiccan who has now dedicated her life to Christ.

Mara and Press go to their colleague’s office only to find her murdered!  They really don’t want to become embroiled in another mystery, but circumstances pull them into the fray.  They must battle gossip and rumors that are untrue but rise to the point where they might lose their jobs because of this.  Who is behind the murder and the vicious rumors about Press and Mara?  Press also has a daughter in college who is facing persecution because of her stance about her faith.  She is facing possible expulsion from college.  What will she do if this comes to pass?  Hasn’t Press taught her to stand up for what she believes it?  At what cost?

In this second book of the series, readers get to know Professor Preston “Press” Barclay better.  The way his mind works, his quirky sense of humor and some truly terrible puns are on display.  I relished the interplay between Press and Mara, as well as the subtle kind of under-your-breath witty comments Press made while talking to others.  I also could identify his feelings when walking around campus with the ivy-covered walls and the smell of books in the campus library…the smells of home to him.  His willingness to stand up for his faith and values make me like him even more.  I can’t wait to read the third book in the series, Murder in Disguise.  This is a truly entertaining mystery series that readers won’t want to miss!

Friday, February 1, 2019

The First Mountain Man Preacher’s Rage


Title:  The First Mountain Man Preacher’s Rage

Author:  William W. Johnstone & J. A. Johnstone

Pages:

Year:  2019

Publisher:  Kensington Publishing

My rating:  5 out of 5 stars.

What a thrilling story to read!  Preacher is one of my favorite characters as his various thoughts or decisions he makes as a mountain man are interesting.  I also love how Preacher is wise in how to stay alive, his love for his son, and his desire to protect others from danger.  In this novel, we see Preacher, his son, an elderly Indian man, and two men from the east come together to trap for furs to make a living.  The friendships they have with each other are amazing, and deep-down Preacher seems to me to have a loving heart even when he must speak truth that sounds harsh.

The antagonists are one Indian tribe and some white men who are more than thieves; they are murderers.  Yet, these two come together in a very tenuous agreement based on hate and unfettered desire for a woman.  I sat down one afternoon, read half the book and then stayed up late that same night to finish the book because the action was exceptional, and I wanted to see how the plot was going to play out!

Westerns are a very particular genre that requires the ability to write a great story with knowledge of many different topics.  The Johnstones do just that.  These westerns are some of my favorites to read and share with others.  I hope you read this book or other westerns published thus far written by the Johnstones.