"Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body." Sir Richard Steele

Wednesday, December 29, 2010



Shelley Shepard Gray
Avon Books 2010
ISBN 9780061990960

   It is Christmas time and everyone at the Brenneman Bed and Breakfast are looking forward to closing down for the holidays and enjoying their time together. Unfortunately, two unexpected visitors at the inn plan on spending the holidays. Levi is an angry and sullen man who just wants to be alone. Melody arrives, very pregnant and is unwilling to say why she has traveled all the way from Kentucky alone.
   Mrs. Brenneman tries to make everyone comfortable; but her daughter Katie is not having any of it. She is put out because of the intrusion and is not very welcoming until her mother gives her a tongue lashing. Eventually, Katie makes peace with the situation and even goes so far as apologizing.
   Katie is convinced that these visitors are holding secrets and she is determined to find out what they are. Katie, however, has secrets of her own. Can all of the Brenneman family and the unexpected visitors combine for a peaceful Christmas together? Several trials keep the holidays hopping at the inn forcing all concerned to work together in harmony.
   This is a wonderful holiday story that once again proves that all things happen for a reason. If you have faith in the Lord and pray for help and guidance, he will direct your path. Miracles do happen and the Christmas season is no exception. A man who is lost and angry can learn to love again. A young woman learns to trust and find love in the most unlikely way. Horrible situations can be blessings in disguise.
    If you are a fan of a great Amish story or a nice love story, I highly recommend this book. Curl up in a comfy chair and join the folks at the Brenneman Inn. I doubt that you will be disappointed.
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Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Carol for Christmas

A Carol for Christmas

A Carol for Christmas
Robin Lee Hatcher
Zondervan 2006
ISBN 9780310257769

   Carol and Jonathan married against against their parents' wishes despite the hardships they would endure. As a consequence, Carol gives up a career in singing. Both of them leave college behind and Jonathan has to start at the bottom of the ladder at his father's department store. In order to prove himself to his father, he leaves Carol at their small apartment for long hours. This begins to put a strain on their marriage and Carol becomes discontent.
   The longer they are separated; the more Carol feels she has given up everything for their marriage and Jonathan has given up nothing. Eventually an opportunity arises for Carol to use her singing talent. Will she be able to trust in the Lord and make the right decision for the both of them? The answer comes when Carol is faced with the true meaning of Christmas.
   This was a nice Christmas novella and an quick enjoyable read. The story brings to focus the importance of prayer and allowing the Lord to guide your path.  If you are a fan of Christian fiction and holiday stories, I would recommend you give it a try.

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Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas to All My Friends and Followers

   I found this on the internet and wanted to share with all my friends. My wish for all of you is to have a safe, happy and healthy Christmas and New Year. May your holiday season be full of joy, family and friends. I want to thank all of you for following my blog and helping and encouraging me along the way.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

The Present (Malory Family, Book 6)

The Present
Johanna Lindsey
Avon Books 1998
ISBN 0380977257

   I have a special place in my heart for Christmas stories and this one is no exception. I have not read many of Johanna Lindsey's books and some how I have missed the Malory clan. In my spare time, I am going to dig further into this family of high born scoundrels.
   In this installment of the Malorys, there is much tension afoot. James and his wife are experiencing some marital conflict. Of course, James has no idea why. Men are always the last to know, aren't they? Jason, the Marquis of Haverston, is unable to convince the love of his life and the mother of his child to marry him. To top things off, a mysterious present arrives that will affect the lives of the entire family.
   This little novella was a quick and enjoyable read. A long time mystery is brought to light and the holiday season will be full of joy and anticipation for the future. If you have lost faith in miracles, you will once again believe after reading this book. My only complaint was the story ended a little too abruptly for my liking. The story line was rolling along nicely and we get to the end and it goes from point A to point B in no time. I prefer a smoother transition for the finish. I would still recommend the book for a nice holiday read or one to read anytime. Check it out for yourself and experience a true miracle of Christmas.

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Olga A Daughter's Tale

Olga: A Daughter's Tale

Olga A Daughter's Tale
Written and Published by
Marie-Therese Browne
ISBN 9781847530479

   This is a true story about a young, innocent, coloured, Catholic woman (Olga) who goes to England in 1939 to stay with her alcoholic aunt. Her intent is to remain there for six months; but war and circumstances prevent her from returning to her home and family in Jamaica. The story begins around 1900 and spans approximately fifty years.
   The book starts with a brief history of Jamaica. There is just enough history given so the reader knows what is happening and why; but does not smother you with so much it is boring. The major portion of the book is done in a diary format with entries by Olga's Aunt Lucy, her mother Becky and Olga herself. The entries were very well done and each one flowed nicely into the next. There were also pictures scattered throughout the book which I found quite effective in bringing the story to life.
   The story line was never dull. The history of this family and how they evolved was quite amazing. You have interracial marriage in a time and place where it just wasn't done. There is murder, voodoo, racial prejudice not only by the whites; but also those of color. This is only the beginning. You will have to read the book for yourself because I don't want to give away the story.
    I wish to thank Marie Campbell, (Marie-Therese Browne), for asking me to read and review her book. I must also thank Carol Bridgestock for giving my name to Marie and recommending me. I only hope I will have done the book justice. I have to say that this is not my usual type of read. I generally go for "no brainer" reads. I read for fun and enjoyment and don't want to think about what I am reading. This book pulled me in from the very start. I could not put it down. I got completely caught up in the history of this family. Even though I kind of knew where the story was headed, I was still thrown a little off guard at the end. This book can easily be read in one sitting and I highly recommend it.
    I obtained my copy from Smashwords for free in an eBook form for my kindle. It is also available in other formats on the same site. It can also be found on LuLu.com in paperback and PDF format.

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Monday, December 20, 2010

A Girls Guide to Guys: Meeting Them, Managing Them and All That Love Stuff

A Girl's Guide to Guys
Rachel Hill, AKA Gabby
Reardon Publishing 2010
ISBN 187419204-9

     First of all, I would like to thank Nicholas Reardon for so graciously providing me a copy of this book to read. This has in no way affected my review of the book. I was not compensated in any way for writing a review except for the privilege of reading the book and being provided with a copy.
     Normally, I give a brief synopsis of the book; but a wonderful video from the book trailer says it all.

     This book is written by a young girl who was sixteen years old at the time. She has done an excellent job with her writing. The book gives some very good advice about the male gender; but it also has some very humorous stuff throughout. Lets face it. Dealing with the male species as we do, we must laugh sometimes to keep from crying. Sorry guys, but it's true. If you or anyone you know has a teenager, I would highly recommend this book for them to read. They just might gain some insight into the art of dating. I sincerely hope this is not the last we see of Rachel Hill, AKA Gabby. You can find more information on Rachel at: http://www.gabby-guides.com/.
     There are many wonderful pictures throughout the book created by Manga artist Heby Sim. You can find more of her artwork and other books that she has illustrated at: http://www.chocolatemanga.com/.
     I would be remiss if I did not mention the website of Nicholas Reardon and Reardon Publishing at: http://www.reardon.co.uk/.

Video was used with the permission of Nicholas Reardon of Reardon Publishing.

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Sunday, December 19, 2010

Good afternoon everyone. I am trying to make sure I am connected properly to Networked Blogs on Facebook. I am posting a short note to see if it comes through. I hope to have another review posted sometime today. If you are new to my blog, you can view older posts by visiting my blog on blogspot.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Sarah's Christmas Miracle

Sarah's Christmas Miracle
Mary Ellis
Harvest House Publishers 2010
ISBN 978-0-7369-2968-4

     Sarah Beachy has much to be thankful for with the Christmas season fast approaching. She has a wonderful job at a bed-and-breakfast and she has a serious beau who is expected to pop the question soon. Sarah, however, does not seem anxious to join her church and commit to getting married. She shys away every time her beau approaches the subject. Even more disturbing to her mother, Sarah decides to take a trip to Cleveland to try and track her brother down who left the Amish community years ago.
     The families faith in God is put to the test when Sarah leaves to look for her brother. Her mother has missed Cal for so many years and she is now afraid of losing her daughter to the English world. Will Sarah leave permanently or will the family receive a Christmas miracle?
     This is a wonderful Christmas story that would be a welcome read for the holidays. It is a story of love, hope and redemption. A story of faith and the possibility of miracles. This was my first read by Mary Ellis and will not be my last. Fans of Amish fiction will most definitely enjoy reading this story. If you have never read Amish fiction before, I highly recommend this book as a good way to start.
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Saturday, December 11, 2010

Mistletoe Mayhem (Regency Romance)

Mistletoe Mayhem
Kate Huntington
Kensington Publishing 2000
ISBN 0-8217-6739-9

     Madelyn Rathbone has turned down many eligible and appropriate suitors over the years. She is unable to forget Robert Langtry, a country squire who turned her down because he was from modest means. Madelyn is sure he has settled down and is no longer available; but will fate have it's way when they are brought together for the holiday season?
     Robert Langtry is convinced that his youthful attraction for Madelyn was just that. When they are stranded at an estate at Christmas along with his four wards, he realizes his feelings were not just his youth. He is still in love with Madelyn; but will not allow his true feelings to stand in her way for a proper suitor.
     With the magic of the holiday season, the sweetest joy of all may find its way into the hearts of all. Is Christmas not the time of  peace, goodwill and the joy of love?
     This is a sweet Christmas story set in Victorian England. A time when women were to marry for heirs or money. They did not marry for love. Most pampered women would not have thought of marrying a man with little money or the responsibility of four children. Madelyn is a breath of fresh air in the fact that she dispels the preconceived notion of a spoiled, rich and pampered woman.  After spending considerable time with Madelyn, Robert stills has doubts about his rightful place in her life. Love can bloom in the least unexpected places.
     This is a fast enjoyable read. If you enjoy historical romance, sit back, relax and enjoy. You won't be sorry.
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Friday, December 10, 2010

A Callahan Carol

      A Callahan Carol is a wonderful short story written by Emily March as a Christmas gift to her many fans. It is a lead in story to her new series called Eternity Springs. The first book Angels Rest is due out on 2/15/11 followed by Hummingbird Lake in March and Heartbreak Falls in April.
      A Callahan Carol is a lovely Christmas story much like Charles Dickens, A Christmas Carol. In this instance, our Scrooge is Branch Callahan, the patriarch of the family. Before the story begins, Emily gives us a brief introduction to the family and leads us up to the point of the story where John, the youngest son and brother has gone missing and is never found. Herein begins the tale of present day Christmas and the journey that Branch Callahan must take. This is a story of a families love, devotion, and heartaches. It is the discovery of the true meaning of Christmas and the miracles that can happen if you allow yourself to never give up hope. I highly recommend this story to get you in the Christmas spirit. Grab yourself a cup of tea or hot chocolate. Sit back. Relax and enjoy.
     Scrowl down to the bottom of my blog. Click on the widget for A Callahan Carol to get your free copy and start reading

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Wednesday, December 8, 2010

A Plain and Simple Christmas

A Plain &Simple Christmas
Amy Clipston
Zondervon 2010
ISBN 978-0-310-32736-3

     Anna Mae McDonough was shunned by her family four years ago when she left her Amish community in Lancaster County, Pa. She chose to marry an Englisher in Baltimore rather then stay in her community. With the Christmas season drawing near, she longs to see her family and have a reunion and once again become a family. The question is whether her family will accept her or is it too late for reconciliation.
     With the help of a dear friend and family member, she hopes to visit for the Christmas season. Is it God's will for her to be accepted or is it too late? Can Christmas miracles truly happen?
     Amy Clipston is the author of the widely popular Kauffman Amish Bakery Series and this book follows in it's steps. This story brings to life the pain of being separated from your family and is a true love story in every sense of the word. It is also a testament of what happens if you pray and are determined to follow God's plan no matter the cost.
     This book was a real page turner from the beginning and the characters become part of your family. I hope to see more of these folks in the future and what may be in store for them. It is a wonderful Christmas story that makes you believe in miracles. If you are a fan of a great love story and Amish fiction, this is definitely the book for you. I highly recommend it.
didn't like itit was okliked itreally liked itit was amazing (my current rating)