The Proof

Colwell, Cheryl. The Proof. USA: Inspired Fiction Books. 2014.

SUMMARY:
proofStill having nightmares over the death of his sister in a mudslide twenty-six years ago, Gabe Dolcini finds himself in even more trouble. When given the chance to meet his Grandfather in Italy, Gabe takes the opportunity-only to find himself the guardian of ll Testamento (The Proof) which proves God’s existence…most of all to himself. Armed with an ancient map, surviving dangerous encounters and finding trust in others as well as God, Gabe must challenge his past, learn forgiveness and overcome his doubts…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
From the opening scene, this novel held my attention while actually coaxing me into it even more intently as the story continued. Filled with fact intermingling perfectly with fiction, the line between was hard to draw. Having read and enjoyed this author’s first book, The Secrets of the Montebellis, I was excited to be offered the chance to read and review yet another book by her. Adventure, suspense, danger, faith and secrets all blend effortlessly into a riveting novel which still has me considering possible events. Well-written; very enjoyed!

RATING:
4.5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of The Proof from the author, Cheryl Colwell, for my honest review*

Breathing Room

Tankersley, Leeana. Breathing Room: Letting Go So You Can Fully Live. Grand Rapids, MI: Revell Publishing. 2014.

SUMMARY:
breathWritten in the style as part memoir of her  life mixed with another part of guidance to get through that time, Leeana Tankersley exemplifies the reasons we need to take the time to breathe. Filled with personal stories, ideas to accept the grace freely given to us, and the determination to follow through day-after-day, Breathing Room shares how to acquire and then embrace the freedom…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Obviously not living an easy life, Leeana Tankersley takes the time to share her personal hardships, thoughts and reliance on God. Though a few Bible verses/ characters were cited, there were others quoted which did not resonate as strongly for her purpose. Well written, humorous yet painful at times, and quite interesting with useful suggestions, I felt the information was not necessarily for me at this time. Perhaps a target audience of younger mothers or a mother’s Bible Study would be best for this book. Again, it depends where on your journey in life you are traveling as to how much in this book will be relevant to you.

RATING:
4 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Breathing Room from Revell Publishing for my honest review*

Buttermilk Sky

Watson, Jan. Buttermilk Sky. Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House Publishers. 2014.

SUMMARY:
skyStruggling in secretarial school, Mazy Pelfry has more than her typing to worry about…girl drama, a worrisome illness, boyfriend trouble, a mama cat and her kittens, and succeeding in her career choice. Through faith in God, a new friendship and belief in herself, Mazy just may flourish…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
As a new author for me, Jan Watson was a welcomed surprise. I absolutely loved the cover of this book (which attracted me in the first place) and found the overall story to be well written albeit a bit jumbled in parts. Some pieces I had trouble putting together or seeing the correlation; however, towards the end of the novel things started making sense. Though not a sequel, Buttermilk Sky incorporates some of the characters from previous stories (I later discovered). I did appreciate the strong faith aspect included as well as the actual writing style. Definitely an author I would like to read again! (One of the things I tend to look for while reading a book is finding out why/ how a novel is named…this story hit that mark perfectly!)

RATING:
4.5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Buttermilk Sky from Tyndale House Publishers  for my honest review*

Deceived

Hannon, Irene. Deceived. Grand Rapids, MI: Revell Publishing. 2014.

SUMMARY:
deceivedKate Marshall turns to PI Connor Sullivan in the hopes of recovering her young son who she presumed dead in an accident. Is it possible she really saw him at the mall? Is it possible he could still be alive? Is it possible she just may be going crazy? A boating accident, a missing child, a grieving mother and lots of secrets all contribute to a fast-paced story in Deceived

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
I was caught up in the plot from the first few pages and they continued to turn quickly throughout the entire book. I appreciated the overall thought process of God being in control, having a Master Plan for each life and being able to trust in God when no one else on earth could be trusted. The witnessing of God and faith in the book was subtle yet definite. Along with the twists and unexpected turns in the storyline, there was also a new concept I had never considered before and am still pondering. A new author for me, this will definitely not be the last book I read from Irene Hannon. Part of the Private Justice series, I read Deceived out of series order but I was unaware of it until I looked for her other books. A well-written suspenseful Christian novel!

RATING:
5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Deceived from Revell for my honest review*

Prescription for Life

Furman (MD, FACS), Richard. Prescription for Life: Three Simple Strategies to Live Younger Longer. Grand Raids, MI: Revell Publishing. 2014.

SUMMARY:
prescriptionWith years of experience as a vascular surgeon, Dr. Richard Furman shares how to live younger, longer and healthier. Citing three strategies to follow which allow you to live life to the fullest, healthiest and longest possible, Prescription for Life lays the foundation.  While changing his own life, he hopes to allow you to change yours too…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
With so many diets and exercise books on the market these days, I started to read this book a bit skeptically. Not far into the book though, I realized this was a real approach to healthy living, not just a fad. Through extensive research, personal experience and quite possibly some (not so common) common sense, Dr. Furman shows how choices can affect consequences. Weight, food and exercise are a few of the items which can determine various cancer risks, dementia and dysfunctions. I found this book to be informative, thought and action provoking, a direction towards a healthier lifestyle and definitely meant to be re-read and shared with family and friends. Here’s to a healthier life!

RATING:
5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Prescription for Life from Revell Publishing for my honest review*

A September Bride

Springer, Kathryn. A September Bride: A Year of Weddings Novella. Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan. 2014.

SUMMARY:
septemberFinally finding home in Red Leaf, Wisconsin, Annie Price hopes to become a respected member of the community. Working as the manager of Second Story Books bookstore, Annie finds herself paired with Jesse Kent, son of the bookstore’s owner, in a reenactment of a wedding at the historical society. Though their pasts may make a relationship hard, does it necessarily make it impossible?

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
As another installment in the A Year of Weddings series, this novella fit perfectly. Sweet yet filled with humor, the underlying storyline contains a message of people trying to trust while finding themselves. A new author for me, I enjoyed her writing enough to search for her other books. What a wonderful, pleasant yet diverse set of novellas included in this series…I have truly enjoyed meeting the different authors, finding some new favorite characters and relishing in the weddings. As a side note, I thought this particular novella had a beautiful cover to match the story.

RATING:
4 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of A September Bride from BookLook Bloggers and Zondervan for my honest review*

Messy Beautiful Love

Schacht, Darlene. Messy Beautiful Love: Hope and Redemption for Real-Life Marriages. Nashville, TN: Nelson Books. 2014.

SUMMARY:
messyAs author and founder of an online Christian magazine, internet devotions and popular blog, Darlene Schacht tackles the complexities of marriage in her new book, Messy Beautiful Love. Financial problems, rambunctious children, aging parents, true exhaustion and mixed attitudes are just a few of the many issues affecting real-life marriages today…making it truly messy yet beautiful love…

A PENNY FOR MY THOUGHTS:
Attracted to the book by the cover (so cute), I soon became immersed in the subject matter and appreciated and acknowledged the writing too. With truthfulness, compassion and even humor, Darlene Schacht reminds us why we got married in the first place…before life got in the way! Through Bible references and stories, personal accounts, explanations of gender differences (obviously a lot in the manner of thinking), and a challenge at the end of each chapter, Messy Beautiful Love is solid. Read in snippets or straight through, this book is wonderful for newlyweds or those sharing years of wedded togetherness. Thanks for the reminder to extend the grace we all need!

RATING:
4.5 (out of 5) pennies

*I received a complimentary copy of Messy Beautiful Love from BookLook Bloggers for my honest review*