Thursday, May 24, 2018

The Beginner's Bible Bedtime Collection (20 Favorite Bible Stories and Prayers) by Zonderkidz

My granddaughter just began reading. Oh, the sweetness of the first grade. One of the best treasures is having her curl up next to me and read a story to me. I shared with her that I would look to see if there was a children's Bible for review. Sure enough when I looked I found for review this gem. 

It is perfect! Perfect for little hands, in size and cover. The cover is soft and the cover is inviting. Hello! It's glow-in-the-dark!! Every child will love this feature. 

The inside is just beautiful, bright, and colorful. One feature I love is that we are given stories from the Old Testament and the New Testament. Some that stand out to me are; The Brave Queen, The Wise King, Jesus Calms the Storm, Mountain, and Jesus Returns. These stories are Biblical in every way. They are penned in such a way that little ones can understand. These stories too are short. The lettering is big bold print and there are colorful illustrations on every page. 

What I love is that with these stories it gives way for more conversation, more story time, more time to spend sharing Jesus. It was my granddaughter who said, "Nanny, I love reading about Jesus." This is a great beginning for little ones, whether they have heard of Jesus or maybe this book will be their first encounter. It would make a fantastic gift for a little one in your life. 

We are given 20 stories, but too there is a prayer between every story. These are sweet prayers. The Goodnight Prayer: "Thank You, God, for taking such good care of me. Like a shepherd takes care of his sheep, you always watch out for me!" (The Lord is my Shepherd. He gives me everything I need.-Psalm 23:1). Then there too is an option for the parent/grandparent to read more of the scripture by taking out the Bible and sharing more. This is a great introduction to the Bible for little ones. 

This is a wonderful place for little hearts to begin reading, a sweet treasure to share, and one that will only grow a heart after Jesus. If you are searching for a beginning for little readers or maybe just a goodnight book, this is a wonderful selection. I cannot wait to share it with all my grandchildren. 

This Beginner's Bible was a gift from Zonderkidz for sharing my review with you.

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Send Down The Rain by Charles Martin

When Charles Martin releases a novel I am always excited in anticipation of a great story before me. He is set apart from other favorites of mine. He is a master storyteller. He brilliantly weaves words that is heart-changing. 

Send Down The Rain is one I am still pondering days after I have closed the last page. If you have yet to read a Charles Martin novel this is a great place to begin. If you are already a fan you will want to add this one to your reading list. 

The cover brilliantly captures the heart of the novel. This novel captivated me. I tell you there were portions that were hard to read. Gut wrenching at times with emotion. Let me say I marvel at this storyteller and his gift to bring such a story about restoration, redemption, love, forgiveness, friendship, family, and so much more that points to our Savior, His love, and His mercy. Grace is sewn so gently through these pages. This is just one of those novels that brings the reader to feel great emotion with each turned page. 

The characters are so raw. These are people that have been wounded and been living with a deepness about them that can only be seen by others who carry such agony. He brilliantly connects every character. Their stories unfold before us by allowing the reader to not be hurried through the story, but piece by piece, and giving the reader time to really absorb the reality for each character. 

These characters find second chances. There is one who intervenes, one who takes upon the pain of others, and through giving of himself finds the healing he too needs. Mr. Martin begins the Prologue with this verse: "Blessed is the man whose strength is in You, whose heart is set on pilgrimage." -Psalm 84:5 

We begin in the year of 1964 and as the story grows we go from that year to present day. The story flows so beautifully from present to past. I just love all that is represented in this story. We see such a love and grace for others. 

I would love to see this one played out on the big screen. It held such twists and turns that I was captivated and closed the last page wanting more!! This is one of those memorable novels that will forever remain with me. Of course I will be awaiting the next release of Mr. Martin. 


This novel was a gift from Thomas Nelson for sharing my review with you. 

Charles Martin is the New York Times bestselling author of thirteen novels. He and his wife, Christy, live in Jacksonville, Florida. Learn more about him at Facebook: Author.Charles.Martin Twitter: @storiecareer

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Ever Faithful {A 365 Day Devotional} by David Jeremiah

I love devotionals for many reasons. Most of all because they are a tool to aid in my faith journey. They give way for extra study and deeper pondering. Just beginning the day with words that point me to seeking the Lord or ending my day with my last thoughts focused on Him. 

I greatly admire Dr.David Jeremiah. He is a trusted pastor and teacher. That is valuable in choosing a devotional. 

This 365 day devotional is focused on God. He is the center of every devotional, plus he too gives us devotionals that deal with our everyday life. Dr. Jeremiah doesn't stray with stories of himself, but remains in the Bible, giving us truth with wonderful insight. This is a devotional that truly touches on the aspects of our life showing us to use scripture to keep us focused on living a Christ-centered life. 

This one is just beautiful. I love the colors inside and out. Many devotionals focus on women's issues or are geared to a certain group. This devotional is for everyone. It would make a wonderful gift. As I was reading I kept thinking it would be a great tool for a Sunday school class, Awana class, or a small group setting. It's wonderful reading on our own, but to have friends join us and then share about the devotional would be a wonderful added treasure. 

I chose to review this devotional because it was written by David Jeremiah. The question is; would I purchase this copy with my own money? Absolutely! Another gem by David Jeremiah. 


This devotional was a gift from Thomas Nelson for sharing my review with you. 

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Things I Never Told You by Beth K. Vogt

I don't even know where to begin except to just start with a huge WOW! I absolutely loved this book. I have to be honest. I was a bit surprised in reading the Amazon reviews of this selection. So maybe I need to begin there. 

This is a contemporary women's fiction. This isn't a YA. Of course young adults can read this and find themselves within these pages, but it isn't published as a YA. 

One reviewer said she felt cheated because she expected deep dark secrets. Really? It's amazing how a book touches every so differently. I found this book to be amazing. Deep and poignant. 

Things I Never Told You is a novel about sisters, but so much more. It's about family, friendship, loss, regret, wounds of the past, acceptance, and hiding our emotions to simply live each day. 

What I love about this book. There's so much! This novel goes way below the surface into the deep with these characters. I relationship aspect of the sisters is something most can relate to. There are three living sisters, Payton, Jillian, and Johanna. Beth did a fantastic job with these characters relating to their births. Johanna being the oldest, Jillian the middle sister, and Payton the baby. We journey through life with all three of these sisters. Beth even allows us to get to know Payton's twin, Pepper, who died when these twins were in high school. But this novel goes far beyond high school. 

We also get to know the men in the lives of these sisters. Each of these sisters are living with a circumstance that brings great trial. Payton may be the main character, but I enjoyed Jillian's story and the unexpected battle that she is faced with. Johanna is the character I least liked, but as the story flows we too get to know more of her life. 

I love how this family isn't one that does God. These sisters didn't grow up in a Christian home, but as we see God is present in their lives. Prayer from one sister has the power to change hearts and give room for faith to blossom. We see how God woes and never gives up. These sisters have faith enter their lives through others who walk with Jesus. I so loved this! 

Something else I really enjoyed is that this book doesn't end all tied up sweetly with a bow. I like to imagine what happens to the characters I've come to call friends after the last page is turned. Beth gives the reader room to imagine. She gives just enough detail throughout the book to keep the reader wanting to turn pages. But not too much so the reader knows exactly what is coming in the next chapter. 

This is a family where we see their struggles and how they try so hard to keep their past and their emotions in check. They don't do God and they don't go deep. But as the novel grows we see the heart of these characters open up. I love reading the journey of characters and finding out just why they are the people they are today. Beth gives way for us to see their past and their future fears, all while trying to just breathe in the present. 

One character I really enjoyed was Zach Gaines. I won't give away his secrets, but his life is one where in the midst of where he was ready to give up on life God showed up and changed everything for this young man. 

I cannot wait to see what's next for these Thatcher sisters! 

This novel was a gift from Tyndale for sharing my review with you. 

Beth K. Vogt believes God's best often waits behind doors marked Never. Beth is a 2016 Christy Award winner, as well as a 2016 ACFW Carol Award winner and a 2015 RITA Award finalist. Visit Beth at

Honeysuckle Dreams (A Blue Ridge Romance) by Denise Hunter

If you are on the search for an afternoon romance read Denise Hunter has brought us another addition to her Blue Ridge Romance series. One can read this selection as a stand alone. You won't have to go back and read the first, Blue Ridge Sunrise, but you just might eagerly await the next release, on magnolia lane

I admire Denise Hunter for her writing style. It's easy and inviting. The writing tenderly flows as the pages turn. For me this wasn't a deep read, but one that invited me to escape for an afternoon. 

Grab your favorite cup an find a comfortable place to settle in for a fantastic romance read. You will find an assortment of friendship, parenthood, love, and faith, intertwined with finding dreams and letting go. Deciding what's of value in life and what just doesn't matter at all. But in the midst of the trials that invade life the most important treasure we have is hope.

What I love about this selection is how it begins with friendship. In this characters we will see just what they are willing to do for love. I have to say the novel was predictable, but very enjoyable. We journey with these characters through trials that seem almost impossible to face, but they find that with faith all things are possible. 

Another aspect of this book that I really enjoyed was that through the circumstances these characters face we too are witness to how their past plays a huge roll in their present. It isn't until they come face to face with the wounds of the past can they can truly see the future for what it is. 

This novel was a gift from Thomas Nelson for sharing my review with you.

Denise Hunter is the internationally published bestselling author of more than thirty books, including A December Bride and The Convenient Groom, which have been adapted into original Hallmark Channel movies. She has won The Holt Medallion Award, and The Reader's Choice Award, The Carol Award, and the The Foreword Book of the Year Award and is a RITA finalist. When Denise isn't orchestrating love lives on the written page, she enjoys traveling with her family, drinking green tea, and playing drums. Denise makes her home in Indiana, where she and her husband are currently enjoying an empty nest.


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