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Topic: February 2013 - Reviews/Discussions of Christian Books Read

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Subject: February 2013 - Reviews/Discussions of Christian Books Read
Date Posted: 2/1/2013 9:26 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2009
Posts: 15,088
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Please post book reviews and/or comments on Christian books that you have read in January 2013 here

If you are participating in the 2013 Christian Reading Challenge:

Extra, Extra Bonus

Spread the Word:  Post a review of a book that you have read in the monthly review topic and you will be entered for a random drawing of a WL book to be chosen by me (valued under $15).  There will be a minimum of 4 drawings a year with maybe a couple of more thrown in.  You do not have to track them.  I will get the names from the thread.  A person may only win once.

FYI - I am exempt

Date Posted: 2/2/2013 6:08 PM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2009
Posts: 6,035
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I finished A Wedding Invitation by Alice Wisler. I always hate to say this, especially about a Christian book, but I really did not enjoy it at all.  Some of the secondary characters were interesting, but the main male and female lead were not very likeable to me.  There were ridiculous coincidences. And foreshadowing of things I kept expecting to happen but never did.  The whole thing was just a mess to me. 

Date Posted: 2/2/2013 7:39 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 210
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I read Her Daughter's Dream by Francine Rivers, a sequel to the book Her Mother's Hope.  These two books deal with four generations of women in a family, and how poor communication leads to relationship conflicts that get passed down from one generation to another.  As usual Francine Rivers did not disappoint.  I give this one five stars.

Date Posted: 2/7/2013 1:35 PM ET
Member Since: 6/23/2008
Posts: 13,835
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I finished Three by Ted Dekker last night.  Even though I knew how it ended, it still kept me guessing all the way through the book as to HOW it could end that way.  Another good (and not gory) Ted Dekker book!

Date Posted: 2/10/2013 2:43 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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Finished reading The Tapestry of Hope by Tracie Petersen, the first of her Lights of Lowell series............rating it 4 stars.....a historical romance......story of an unwanted romance in my opinion...........hopefully the second of the series will be a wanted romance...........

Date Posted: 2/10/2013 5:30 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 210
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I was interested in that series simply because I briefly lived in Lowell some years back and had toured the Boott Cotton Mill Museum and Mill Girls Museum.

Date Posted: 2/11/2013 10:09 AM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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I read a book last night by one of our own PBSers, Anna Weaver.  Last month I read her first book and this was her latest book........used it for the CR challenge.  This book was entertaining; more about her and her family's life living in their RV now that they no longer own a stationary home.   Made me want to pack up and go on the road.......at least for awhile.  Rating it 4 stars......

 

Date Posted: 2/11/2013 12:35 PM ET
Member Since: 2/23/2006
Posts: 665
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I forgot to post this review on Gideon's Call Author: Peter Leavell:

This book was an Interesting historic fiction based on the plight of the freedmen and women, who were left behind on the islands off SC, when the slave owners abandoned their plantations during the Civil War. I had never read or thought about what might have happened to the slaves, whose wealthy owners abandoned them. I wasn't even aware that this happened.

Gideon's Call chronicles the efforts of government and private agencies and individuals, sent from the North to attempt to assimilate, train, and educate the freedmen. This is the story of those who worked to help the newly freed slaves make a life for themselves--often at great personal sacrifice. The good that these people accomplished is contrasted with the heart-wrenching prejudice and cruelty of those without conscience.

Rising to the top of the chaos, a young slave boy, Tad, strives for his own goals. Although Tad's goals do not necessarily coincide with those who are overseeing his welfare, he pursues them with dogged tenacity. Tad’s story is a testament of faith and indomitable spirit of one young slave boy growing into manhood during explosive change in the mid-1800’s.

I recommend this book to anyone, who is interested in Civil War history--especially as it pertains to the freeing of the slaves. I thought this book was especially moving, because the reader was able to see this piece of history from a slave's point of view.

Date Posted: 2/11/2013 1:08 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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Interesting Kay........the book I"m reading now, the second of the Lights of Lowell series is about the runaway slave movement...........

Date Posted: 2/15/2013 5:32 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 3,365
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I recently finished two books. One was The Maid of Fairbourne Hall by Julie Klassen. This was an interesting book with a story of a privileged girl who becomes a servant. Julie Klassen writes a 19th century London story like nobody else can. The main character was well fleshed out and I liked Margaret but her infatuation with Lewis threw me for a spin. Nathaniel was by far the better man and it took her a while to figure that out. I enjoyed reading about the whole servant lifestyle and the differences between households. 

Date Posted: 2/15/2013 5:55 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2008
Posts: 3,365
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The other book I finished was Rebekah by Jill Eileen Smith. I am always hesitant with a biblical novel because I don't know how much liberty they will take with the story. There is only so much in scripture for them to flesh out the book:) But I have enjoyed Jill's books in the past and this one did not disappoint. Very well written and brings out some things you don't often think about. Not sure I agree with her portrayal of Laban but otherwise a good story. 

Date Posted: 2/16/2013 5:39 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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Finished the second book of Tracie Peterson's Lights of Lowell series; A Love Woven True........rating 4.5........this one was even better than the first one........She finds true love in this book of the series........

Date Posted: 2/16/2013 8:27 PM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2009
Posts: 6,035
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Finished Petra by TL Higley.  I really loved this book.  Great characters who really grew as people and in their faith through the story.  This was the first time I had read anything by this author, but I have others by her on my TBR, so I'm looking forward to reading them. I loved her writing....very descriptive using very few words.

Date Posted: 2/16/2013 10:12 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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Finished up Bad Girls of the Bible: And What We Can Learn From Them by Liz Curtis Higgs..........she tells the story of ten infamous women of the Bible,  first a modern day version using her wit and sense of humor, then relates it to the Biblical version........with questions at the end of each story to get you to thinking......Includes Eve of course, the woman at the well, Lot's wife, Jezebel, and more.  Entertaining, informative, and thought provoking.........rating 4 stars.  Fulfills the bonus category of reading a book about a favorite biblical person: Mine is the woman at the well........Love the story!

Also finished the third book of Tracie Peterson's Lights of Lowell series.......The Pattern of Her Heart.......historical novel of the early struggles over slavery and how it affects one family..........rating 4 stars........



Last Edited on: 2/16/13 10:16 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/22/2013 2:01 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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I'm finishing up the following books:

The Dieter's Prayer Book: Spiritual Power and Daily Encouragement by Heather Kopp  rating 4 stars.........a wonderful book for someone who needs spiritual encourage to help them lose weight...........30 days of devotions:  devotion related to healthy eating/weight loss followed with a prayer on the same topic.  Wonderful book!

I Declare: Proclaiming the Promises of God Over Your Life by Joel Osteen rating 4.5 stars.   31 days of self talk ....his ideal in this book reminds me of my Mother telling me as a child:  Never say anything that you don't want to come true.......Joel explains if yuo go around expecting the worse and speaking the worse, that's what you'll get.  It's a talk positive, be positive.......and good things will happen..........A month's worth of  what you need to "declare" for that day and then an explanation from Joel.........Also reminds me of Oral Roberts saying "Today something good is going to happen to you"  Joel believes if you believe that, something good will happen to you.  .Love it!

and lastly, finishing up Love Finds You in New Orleans, Lousiana by Christa Allan (when I saw the authors's picture on the book, it reminded me of Christa here on PBS for some reason hmmm)   This book is a bit different from the other Love Finds You books I've read so far;  more in depth, more substance?   Of course it takes place in Louisana and addresses racial issues and also how the young women in society are more or less "slaves" in that their family plans their marriage with them having no choice in their selected spouse....Rating 4 stars........I'm using this as one of my five "alike" books for the CR challenge.......four more Love Finds You books to read to fulfill that.......

Sitting here at home --snow day!-- I havent completely finished these books but a good time for me to review them to stay caught up.  :0)

 

 

 

Date Posted: 2/22/2013 5:34 PM ET
Member Since: 11/12/2008
Posts: 21
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One of the books I finished this month was "Fire By Night (Refiner's Fire, Bk 2) by Lynn Austin

I truly enjoyed this book!  It was thrilling to see the changes in the two main female characters throughout the story.  Julia Hoffman starts out as a priviledges, spoiled, and self absorbed girl whom's only goal is to marry.  She matures into a young woman with depth and character.

Phoebe Bigelow is a plain "horsey" , poor farm girl, left behind as her brothers went off to fight in the civil war, to work for a local family.  She quickly escapes and becomes Ike Bigelow to also fight in the war.  She befriends a short gentleman named Ted.  To see their friendship blossom was enchanting.

I would recommend this to anyone whom enjoys Lynn Austin's books and/or stories set in the Civil War era,.

 

Date Posted: 2/22/2013 5:42 PM ET
Member Since: 11/12/2008
Posts: 21
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I also finished  Downfall (Intervention, Bk 3) by Terri Blackstock this month.

I can honestly say I have never been disappointed by any of her books, and Downfall is no exception.  The third, and last, in her Intervention series is a page turner.  I read this in two days, I just could not put it down.

I read that others could not understand or accept the mother's reactions...I have a sister with a drug addiction, and she has yet to get help.  Maybe that gives me "more" understanding, but I can totally see why the mom would be suspicous of Emily's behaviour.  It's very hard to regain that trust.  Emily works very hard to regain that trust and hold onto her faith in God.

Date Posted: 2/26/2013 12:58 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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While snowed in, I read The Bridge by Karen Kingsbury this morning  Rating FIVE STARS!!   Wonderful story of friendship and love, and a bookstore!!  You've got to read it!

Date Posted: 2/26/2013 9:51 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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Continuing on my snowed in alone day, I read The Reunion by Dan Walsh, another 5 star rating..........The book is about two reunions;  one between Vietnam vets, one between a vet and his family...........a newspaper reporter facilitates both reunions while writing a book to honor Vietnam vets in memory of his Dad who died during the war.  The book hits home; as my husband began his military career when the Vietnam war was still going on and myself shortly after it ended........when the grandson of one shows up in his Marine uniform, I thought of my son who is in his first day of Marine boot camp, and the tears flowed........Yes, the book is a tearjerker but well you read the book.......it is superb!

Date Posted: 2/28/2013 3:04 PM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 16,800
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 Finished reading another book.........love snow days!!   The Third Millennium by Paul Meier.........I'm using it for the speculative fiction category.......This book is definitely 5 plus stars.   An easy to follow story beginning with the Rapture through the end times..........supposedly it's the first of a series but I havent checked into the other books yet, but I will.........I loved the Left Behind series years ago but this one is much better..........

 
 
 
 


Last Edited on: 2/28/13 3:08 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/28/2013 9:33 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2009
Posts: 15,088
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I've seen his books Lynn but never read one.  May have to look for them.