Sunday, December 31, 2017

All she left behind

Jane Kirkpatrick is another one of my favourite authors, I love historical fiction and reading about strong women, so I know when I’ve got a book of hers in front of me, that I’m in for a treat! In “all she left behind” we get to meet Jennie, a young woman who struggles to provide a life for herself and her son after being left behind by  her husband. With a knack for knowing what herbs will help people, Jennie finds herself  as a nurse for an older family’s failing wife/mother. As she steps into this roll she awakens a desire to become a doctor, yet has insurmountable difficulties to overcome.
In so many ways, I love this book! Not only does Jane Kirkpatrick give us a strong womanly character, but she also provides us a character who has to face struggles that are so familiar to today’s women, I love it!!
I would absolutely recommend this book, it’s made its place to my “favourite” section on my bookcase and will be very well loved for years!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

the proving

I have a deep and strong love for Amish fiction, I love the simplicity portrayed in them, while at the same time seeing that even separated from the world, there are still situations that we can all relate to! In Beverly Lewis’ book “The proving”  we meet Mandy, who after having her heart broken leaves The Amish life to begin anew as an “englisher”. After receiving news of her mother’s unfortunate passing she is stunned to find that her mother has left her Amish bed and breakfast to to her, with some added stipulations. As Mandy travels back home she’s caught in between two worlds, one that it achingly familiar yet has memories of heartache, or the easy convinces of the modern world.
I truly loved this book, it was filled with the familiarity that draws me to The Amish fiction, but also has a newness to it that kept me wanting to read on.
I would highly recommend it!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Fierce hearted

I love reading a book that encourages women to stand up and embrace their uniqueness, strengths, and scars,  and to live a full life in the way that God has set up for them to do. In fierce hearted Holley Gerth really gives such a freeing message on how to drop the worries and fears that come against us and instead embrace life and live life to its fullest. Her openness in her book made me feel like I could really relate, and in turn apply her insights to my own life in a much easier way! I found myself very encouraged and empowered reading “fierce hearted”, this is a book I would love to pass on to the young ladies of our world, letting them know that they don’t have to face the struggles of the world alone, and that our weaknesses are made stronger in Christ. I would highly recommend this book for any woman who deals with self doubt, worry or fear, or really any and every woman. A message of hope, freedom, and purpose is one we can all use!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

These healing hills

I have been a long time fan of Ann Gabhart, so I was pretty excited to see a book of hers up for review! I love that her characters have such strength and integrity to them. She writes them with such openness that you find yourself drawn in wanting to know more! With “These healing hills” I was absolutely hooked by the first chapter, and spent every spare moment with my nose in the book! I loved that Francine (the main character) was written in such a realistic way, she was easy to relate to, and like, without appearing too “preachy” or too “good” to be believable. I love that Gabhart writes her characters with flaws and struggles, it truly makes her books come to life! When we meet Francine we find that she’s been dropped by her long time love interest, and sets out to find herself and her future in the Appalachian mountains being trained as a midwife.
I deeply enjoyed this book, as always, Ann Gabhart wrote the characters and scenes of her novel in such a way as to make you feel like you’re right there with them. My only disappointment was that the book had to end!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

All Saints

I've been looking forward to reading this book for a while, I've both read about the book from various websites, and seen previews of the movie of it as well, and had some high expectations of this book! I was not disappointed! Sometimes you find that books based on true stories tend to flow not as easily as other books, and it's a struggle to get into a good reading rhythm with them.  However "All Saints" did not have that problem, the book flowed very well together, the characters were easy to like and they felt quite relatable as well! As the Pastor's wife of a small church, I really could understand some of the struggles the church faced, and absolutely loved that Pastor Michael and his congregation decided to step out of what was comfortable and take a risk to follow what God had for them! I think the dynamics of our churches are different in these days, we no longer view our mission field from far away, the mission field has come to us, and this book really spoke well to taking that opportunity to reach out and minister in a new way! I truly would recommend that anyone who pastors or goes to a small or struggling church pick up a copy of this book, you be both encourage and challenged by it!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

The promise of dawn

I've been a fan of Lauraine Snelling's books for a while now, I really enjoy books set in the past, and that show the strength of families overcoming the difficulties of travelling to new lands. Snelling has a great way in her writings to bring the reader easily into the lives of her characters, and paints such a great picture of their lives and situations that it's hard not to feel involved in the characters lives! In "The promise of dawn" we read about Rune and Signe, who immigrate to America to help their uncle with his farm. Upon arriving they discover how difficult and hard their relatives are to both live and work with. As they struggle every day to survive the harsh life their uncle has provided them, they also struggle to see eye to eye on both faith and life.
I really appreciated that Snelling included and wrote about Signe and her struggle with her faith, I find that a character is more relatable when they're written to show that they struggle with doubt and disbelief.  In all, I thought this was a fantastic book and can't wait to read more from this series!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Saturday, September 30, 2017

The Return

I enjoy Amish fiction, and especially by Suzanne Woods Fisher, so I was very excited to see her book up for review!! It absolutely did not disappoint, this is now my new favourite of her books. I don't often hold onto books I read, too many books and not enough room, so it takes a truly special book for me to consider adding it to my small collection of books that I just can't give up. This book absolutely made the cut, I loved it, it was inspirational, through provoking, it had suspense and surprise throughout it. I truly struggled to put this book down, I could not read it fast enough! The characters were so well written that it was easy to relate to them and emphasize with their situations. I loved reading about Betsy's captivity and the way she found a love for those that took her from her family.
I would 100% recommend this book, its fantastic, and will become a well read favourite!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Friday, August 25, 2017

The captain's daughter

I do believe that this is the first book I've read by Jennifer Delamere, and I was deeply impressed with it. Her style of writing is engaging and well thought out, I was kept riveted to the book throughout my time reading it. There was enough suspense and action to keep my attention, while also containing thoughtful discussions and thought provoking scenes. I immensely enjoyed reading "the captains daughter" and will be looking up the rest of Jennifer Delamere's books!
I enjoyed getting to know the character of Rosalyn as she navigates her way through London after running away from problems at her former place of employment. It was easy to celebrate with her as she finds her beginnings in the theatre, and as she advances throughout it. Rosalyn was a likeable character who was easy to cheer on and feel a degree of comradery with.  As she strives to hide from those who are trying to bring her harm, Rosalyn finds herself within the care and protection of Nate. As both work to find their place in London and look to the future, they also begin to struggle with growing feelings of affection towards each other.
I truly enjoyed reading this book, it was easy to follow and kept me riveted right till the end. I highly recommend it!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin communications, Inc."

With you always

I have for a long while been a fan of Jody Hedlund's writing, her books are always so well written, engaging, and thought provoking, so I was very pleased to see that her book "With You Always" up for review, I just knew I would enjoy that read!!
I am a big fan of historical fiction, and of strong female characters, so this book was right up my alley, we were introduced to Elise and her sisters as they faced the task of surviving New York in the midst of the 1850's financial crisis. While caring for both her sisters and others who Elise has taken under her wing, she finds all of them in a desperate situation that requires some desperate actions. Leaving behind family in order to ensure their survival is hard for Elise, but as jobs open within the children's aid society Elise feels she has no choice but to travel away to ensure her family will survive and stay together. 
I loved this book, the characters of Elise and Thornton were easy to like and relatable to the reader. I really enjoyed getting to know them as their characters developed throughout the novel, and I truly appreciated that the author wrote them with their flaws included. I dislike characters who are written in an unrealistic manner with no flaws or mistakes, I appreciate that Jody Hedlund takes the time to ensure her characters are infused with both good and poor traits.
I highly recommend this book, it was an entertaining and thoughtful read!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Monday, July 31, 2017

One Dominion

I had the opportunity to review this absolutely stunning book, and I was so impressed with it!
The entire book is filled with beautiful illustrations and photographs of Canada's history, there are some gorgeous maps (I wish I could find the maps in the book in a poster form, they're nice enough to be framed!) and the photographs capture all aspects of Canada's history and people from across the country!  To top it all off everything is written with a good Christian view of both our past and future. I immensely enjoyed reading through the book, and have received so many compliments on it as company flips through it while visiting. 
A stunning book that I highly recommend!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Bible League Canada and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Friday, June 30, 2017

The Ebb Tide

Cover Art

I think at one time or another all of us have felt that pull, that deep desire to visit these far off places, to see something vast and so much bigger than ourselves. I think that's why its so easy to relate to and like Sallie, she is the type of character who almost makes us take a close look at ourselves, who reminds us of those past yearnings for something more, something different.
I love Amish stories, and Beverly Lewis is among the best of this genre's authors, her stories are always so well done, so easy to follow, and so easy to fall in love with!
As Sallie discovers life outside of her Amish colony, and sees all that there is in the world outside, its a struggle for the reader to know whether we should cheer for her inquisitiveness or hope she returns to the Amish setting that we all love! The descriptions of the scenery in this book were so well done, it was so easy to picture the beauty and uniqueness of the oceanside town. 
As always Beverly Lewis has written a fantastic story, the book was incredibly hard to put down, I think I had finished it withing a couple of days (and some late nights!!). As is true with all her books, the only thing disappointing about it, was that it had to end!
I highly recommend it!!
"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

To The Farthest Shores

Cover Art

I know when I have an craving to read a really good historical story, that Elizabeth Camden is one of the first authors I look up, as always her books are well thought out, well written with engaging characters, and hold the readers attention so well.
In Camden's book "To the farthest shores" we meet an army nurse named Jenny, shes a good solid character, very well written and easily likable. I appreciate when authors take the time to develop a good character, and to ensure that the strength of that character shines through in the writing/novel. Camden did a great job with this book, the main character Jenny is easy to like, she exudes strength and determination, and shows such integrity. I love when a female character is given the respect of being written as a strong character. I deeply appreciate that Elizabeth Camden writes a great deal of her characters in her novels this way.
Lt Ryan and Jenny's story is intertwined with past acquaintances and  heartbreaks, of secrets and lingering feelings. As we get to know the characters throughout the story we really get to feel like we know them, and have hope for their story to work out!!

Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

The Chapel Car Bride

Cover Art

I am a huge fan of historical novels, I love reading about times past, and the unique ways people lived and worked, and sought to serve the Lord. Plus I've read many of Judith Miller's books and knew I was in for a pretty good read once I saw "the Chapel Car Bride"!
True to form, Judith Miller provided a story that captured the readers interest right away, with a unique setting and intriguing characters the story pulls you in right from the beginning and doesn't let go until the end! This was one of those books where you love the story and want to read as much as you can as often as you can, but also hate that eventually you'll hit the end! I really enjoyed the two main characters in the book, Hope and Luke, both having come from such different backgrounds, but see the way that their story is woven so cleverly together, it was really a treat to read this book! It was easy to fall into the optimistic and hopeful outlook of Hope in this story, as we see her desire to help those she meets in her travels with her father. I especially enjoyed her character in this book! 
I would highly recommend this book, its witty and clever, and a joy to read!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Hope TV

I've got the unique opportunity this month of reviewing a television station, and I am so excited to share it with all my readers!!
I know I've a few regular readers from the Ontario area, and I've also passed on my recommendations for it to others in the area as well, and I'm hoping you, reader, will if you're able, give this station your attention!
One of my very favorite things in this world is music, especially gospel music, so the minute I saw that the Gaither gospel hour was part of their programming, I had an inkling that I was really going to love Hopetv! The best part though, is that the programming doesn't stop there, there is a vast array of programming on HopeTV that will spiritually feed you regardless of your tastes or where you are in your Christian walk.
Joyce Meyer 2016  The Chronological Gospels with Michael Rood
 From learning to walk in the fullness of God from Joyce Meyer, to following the timeline of Jesus' walk on earth in "The Chronological Gospel" (I have a strong new love for this show in particular, I absolutely love historical lessons about the Bible that give us deeper understanding of both The Word and Jesus) there is a full course meal found in this station!
As summer rolls around and our vacation times come up, I think I will begin to love it even more, while I'm a big advocate of attending a local congregation when you can, however HopeTV is a perfect way to still receive that spiritual feeding when a local church isn't a possibility. There is so much variety of programming that regardless of the "flavor" of your Christianity, there is still programming that will inspire and renew you!
I've found myself surprised with how much more I'm looking forward to our personal vacation time this year, now that I have this station to look to for my own growth, renewal, and inspiration. The biggest struggle of vacations, if there could be a struggle ;)  is that while I get that time of rest, more often than not, I'm in a place or area where that spiritual renewal, that gathering of believers, isn't a possibility. Now that I've been made aware of HopeTV and their programming, I know that my times of rest, will also have times of inspiration and refreshing, my church away from church.
I really encourage all of you to give HopeTV a chance, I have no doubt that, like me, you will be pleasantly surprised with the quality of programming and the variety of the teachings as well.

HopeTV is currently available on Bell 591, throughout Alberta & BC on Telus Optik 875 or Telus Satellite 591, in Manitoba on Shaw/MTS 11 and in Ontario and New Brunswick on Rogers 174.

I hope you all tune in and receive for yourselves the encouragement this station is dishing out!

Wednesday, May 17, 2017


Reunion by Bruxy Cavey

I was looking forward to reading this book the moment I heard about it! As a minister's wife, I know the struggles my husband has in the church, and anything that could give either of us insight on reaching the people of today's world is something that I want to get my hands on!
To start with, while I did find the book incredibly interesting, and very insightful, I didn't 100% agree with everything the author wrote about, that number though was very small, and most of his points and insights were right on., I did find that he had many great points, and really highlighted the idea of who Jesus was/is, I really did enjoy learning quite a bit from him! I really appreciated his incredibly straightforward approach to explaining Jesus, and how to follow him. As someone inside the "Christian" universe, I find i'm too just so tired of the religiosity of our (universal) churches. I loved the real "Bare bones" approach that Bruxy Cavey had, there wasn't a lot of fluff or "Christian" lingo involved in his explanations, but such a simple and honest approach that I really could appreciate.
I would really encourage people to get their hands on this book, I think at the very least, it'll open our eyes on how the world views us, and how we might start reaching a world that's so tired of trite answers. So I'm giving this book a high recommendation, and passing that recommendation on to my husband and church library!!

Monday, April 10, 2017

Words of Grace

I really quite loved this little book, during a very difficult time in my life, I found it to be a calming exercise to just focus on a simple act of colouring, and also to read the devotional and focus on the Word of God made all the difference for me.
I appreciated that the devotionals were simple, they were written in a way that was easy to understand and their length made it easy to find time to add the devotional to my day. The art was well done, and easy to colour in. While I'm not always a huge fan of the adult colouring books (I find them too involved most of the time, and the amount of work to finish one makes me feel more stress not less!) I loved this little book, it was the perfect size! To be able to sit down and colour in a page and do the devotional in one sitting was a great way for me to de-stress at the end of a long day.
I would really recommend this book, its writing is insightful and calming, and the artwork was easy to colour and very well done. All around it was a great book!!

"Book has been provided courtesy of Baker Publishing Group and Graf-Martin Communications, Inc."