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Showing posts from March, 2011

Whew!

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I feel so refreshed- a new blog (check out my personal one at http://coranne.livejournal.com/), most (ok, maybe half) of my blogs copied over to here, and a fresh start!

So what is this blog?  Well, I know that from being a voracious reader- I don't have time for book reviews that are 2 pages long.  I like my reviews short, sweet, and to the point- without loads of spoilers.  I mean, really, who wants to read the entire plot on a website?

I don't do e-readers.  I love the feel of books in my hands.  There is something special about a book (maybe the new book smell?) that can't be replaced.

I don't garuntee a positive review.  To be honest, in the last few months- I have had quite a few stinkers.  I will try and even out those stinkers with books that I have really enjoyed.  Most of the time, though, if I didn't like a book- it wasn't because it was horrible.  It was most likely because it wasn't my style of book.

I hope that this blog will excite you into f…

Kaleidoscope

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Kaleidoscope Seeing God's Wit and Wisdom in a Whole New LightBy Patsy Clairmont
This is the latest book that I reviewed for Book Sneeze. com.  I was originally attracted to this book by its cover- it is so colorful and inviting.  I also knew that Patsy Clairmont is a Women of Faith speaker, and I love their Bible Studies.  I thought that this book was one completely piece- I was surprised to find that it was actually a devotional of selected Proverbs, broken down into 2-3 page increments.

The book was easy to read, I found I could read many of the devotionals in one sitting.  The author is light and funny, while still driving home important points.  She has chosen some of the Proverbs that have the strongest meanings. The set up of each devotional is:  Title of the chapter/ theme verse for the chapter, humorous narrative, and then a section called Bits and Pieces with questions to provoke thought, as well as a final section for additional reading.

Although this book wasn't a…

Radical- Blog Tour (archive)

The friendly folks at WaterBrook Multnomah Publishers have invited me to take a sneak peek at the book Radical: Taking Back Your Faith From The American Dream by David Platt.

Here is an explanation of the book from WaterBrook Multnomah:

"It’s easy for American Christians to forget how Jesus said his followers would actually live, what their new lifestyle would actually look like. They would, he said, leave behind security, money, convenience, even family for him. They would abandon everything for the gospel. They would take up their crosses daily…
 But who do you know who lives like that? Do you?
 InRadical, David Platt challenges you to consider with an open heart how we have manipulated the gospel to fit our cultural preferences. He shows what Jesus actually said about being his disciple—then invites you to believe and obey what you have heard. And he tells the dramatic story of what is happening as  a “successful” suburban church decides to get serious about the gospel accor…

The Heart Mender

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I picked up The Heart Mender as a review for booksneeze.com.  I didn't really know anything about the story, other than I really liked the cover.  Here is the description that Booksneeze.com gives for the book:
"A unique blend of historical fact and engaging fiction showing the power of forgiveness.
In 1942, German subs are dispatched to the Gulf of Mexico to sink U.S. vessels carrying goods and fuel. While taking a late-night walk, Helen Mason—widowed by war—discovers the near-lifeless body of a German sailor. Enraged at the site of Josef Landermann's uniform, Helen is prepared to leave him to die when an unusual phrase, faintly uttered, changes her mind.
In The Heart Mender, a small town must prepare itself for the worst the world has to offer, and Josef and Helen must reconcile their pasts to create a future."

This book was unlike anything I expected.  It was easy to read and had a fantastic story line.  I found the first few chapters extremely interesting (the au…

Whisper on the Wind

"In Brussels at the height of WWI, a small, underground newspaper is the only thing offering the occupied city hope—and real news of the war. The paper may be a small whisper amid the shouts of the German army, but Edward Kirkland will do anything to keep it in print. Meanwhile, Isa Lassone, a Belgian-American socialite whose parents whisked her to safety at the start of the war, sneaks back into the country to rescue those dearest to her: Edward and his mother. But Edward refuses to go, and soon Isa is drawn into his secret life printing the newspaper . . . And into his heart."- Taken from the Tyndale Website

I have a long hard history with Historical Christian romances- they can either be really good... or really terrible and cheesy.  I didn't read any of the summary or an excerpt of this book before I ordered it.  When I recieved the book- I was caught first by the fact that it was a beautiful cover and also... that it looked like most other historical christian roman…

The Thorn- Beverly Lewis

I was given the opportunity by Bethany House Publishers to review a copy of The Thorn by Beverly Lewis.  This book is the first in the newest trilogy by the author.  To be honest, other than a made for tv movie adapted by one of her books, I really have never read anything by Beverly Lewis.  I am fascinated by the Amish but never have picked up any fiction about their lives.  The story switches narrators between two sisters Rose and Hen (short for Hannah). One sister is broken away from the Amish community and is finding herself drawn back into it and away from her "Englisher" husband.  The youngest is maturing and reaching the age of courtship. The book talks a great deal about the relationships between the Amish people and those who are not Amish.

It was a slow start for me- I felt as though the pacing was too slow.  I really think the author oculd have used Hen's story for the first book and Rose's for the second.  I felt as though she tried to do too much in too …

A Year with God

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Summary Provided by Booksneeze.com:

"A 365-day devotional featuring the actual spoken words of God as presented in the Bible.
Too many times the impact and grandness of the actual words God spoke, as recorded in the Bible, are lost in the telling of the story. In A Year with God, the primary focus is to allow the scriptures that contain God's dialogue and the revelations of himself to uniquely speak to the reader. The author follows each reading with insights and applications to help explain the context and nuances of the text. The unique titling of each meditation and the nontraditional themes and organization help bring God to our daily lives. Topics include:
Hope and Fear Love and Hate Perseverance and Quitting Faith and Doubt Loyalty and Betrayal Companionship and Isolation Mercy and Judgment Forgiveness and Anger Joy and Sadness Peace and Conflict"


I  don't think that I read the part of the summary where it described the devotional as a completely Old Testamen…

Love and War Devotional

I was provided with Love and War Devotional for Couples by John and Stasi Eldredge to review by the Blogging for Books program.  The opinions in this review are mine alone and do not reflect the opinions of Blogging for Books or the publisher.

I knew my choice of this devotional was controversial for me.  My husband and I had read Wild at Heart and loved it and I had read Captivating and couldn't stand it.  I knew I had a 50/50 chance of liking this book.

The set up of the book is very good- it is in different sections- different parts of your eight week journey with your spouse.  I found the daily topics to be deep and profound, and I found the Bible verses appropriate.  I did however wish for more meat.  I enjoyed the short paragraphs in each devotional, but I was looking for at least one discussion question to help direct conversations after reading the devotional.

I would reccommend this devotional to any married couple, but especially those who have read Wild at Heart.


Couples Who Pray

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Wow,  this may be the worst book I have ever read.  I have read a LOT of really bad books.  Before I tear the book apart here is the summary provided by booksneeze.com:

" In this entertaining, highly readable book, couples learn that a fabulous marriage can be the outcome of learning to pray together, causing a 20 to 30 percent increase in romance, conversation and happiness.
Best-selling author Squire Rushnell and his wife, entertainer and talk show host Louise DuArt, take readers step by step through The 40 Day Prayer Challenge™ in which couples commit to praying together five minutes a day for forty days. Backed by compelling research from Baylor University and Gallup Poll, the true-life experiences of 24 test couples, including Denzel and Pauletta Washington, Kathie Lee and Frank Gifford, Donna Summer and Bruce Sudano, Scott and Tracie Hamilton, reveal that daily prayer is a "life changing experience" in which most couples report positive outcomes in less than two …

Couples Who Pray

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Wow,  this may be the worst book I have ever read.  I have read a LOT of really bad books.  Before I tear the book apart here is the summary provided by booksneeze.com:

" In this entertaining, highly readable book, couples learn that a fabulous marriage can be the outcome of learning to pray together, causing a 20 to 30 percent increase in romance, conversation and happiness.
Best-selling author Squire Rushnell and his wife, entertainer and talk show host Louise DuArt, take readers step by step through The 40 Day Prayer Challenge™ in which couples commit to praying together five minutes a day for forty days. Backed by compelling research from Baylor University and Gallup Poll, the true-life experiences of 24 test couples, including Denzel and Pauletta Washington, Kathie Lee and Frank Gifford, Donna Summer and Bruce Sudano, Scott and Tracie Hamilton, reveal that daily prayer is a "life changing experience" in which most couples report positive outcomes in less than two …

Plain Proposal

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Book Description from booksneeze.com:

"Miriam Raber takes a bold stand when her Amish boyfriend considers leaving their community. "Whatever he chooses, I'm going with him."
Miriam Raber enjoys life in her Old Order Amish community, and she is hopeful that Saul Fisher will propose to her soon. But when Saul starts talking about leaving the only world either of them has ever known, Miriam imagines what her life might look like as an Englischer. One thing she knows for certain, she loves Saul and feels he’s the one God has chosen for her. But Saul’s indecision has come at an inconvenient time as Miriam is noticing advances from Jesse Dienner, a man she went to school with and who wants to marry.
Complicating matters is the arrival of Miriam’s cousin, Madison, a worldly Englisch girl sent to live with Miriam’s family following trouble back home.
Who will Miriam choose a life with--and who will choose to stay in the Old Order Amish community?"

This book was prett…

Scars of a Chef by Rick Tramanto

I am an avid fan of the Top Chef series.  Now that my brother is a chef- I am really fascinated by everything they have to do. I do know from past readings, however (I'm looking at you Drew Brees), sometimes autobiographies can seem a little choppy or uninteresting.  I have to say I was drawn into this book.  The author is a great storyteller.  I felt as though I was reading a work of fiction instead of someone's actual life.  It astounds me how much the author has been through!

I enjoyed the recipes at the end of each section.  I also enjoyed how the author wrote in a conversational manner- I felt as though he was really telling ME the story.  I especially enjoyed the section of color photos in the middle of the book- and playing "Where's Waldo" with all of the famous chefs in the pictures.

This would be an excellent book for someone starting out as a chef or for someone interested in getting into the cooking industry.  The author makes it very clear that the on…

It's a Fairy Story!

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All her life, Breena had always dreamed about fairies as though she lived among them...beautiful fairies living among mortals and living in Feyland. In her dreams, he was always there the breathtakingly handsome but dangerous Winter Prince, Kian, who is her intended. When Breena turns sixteen, she begins seeing fairies and other creatures mortals don t see. Her best friend Logan, suddenly acts very protective. Then she sees Kian, who seems intent on finding her and carrying her off to Feyland. That's fine and all, but for the fact that humans rarely survive a trip to Feyland, a kiss from a fairy generally means death to the human unless that human has fairy blood in them or is very strong, and although Kian seemed to be her intended, he seems to hate her and wants her dead.

- Summary from Amazon.com


This has the makings of a great story.  Faeries, Summer Court, Winter Court, a best friend who turns out not to be human, a love triangle.  I was so excited going into this book.  It…

An Army of Ordinary People

An Army of Ordinary People  by Felicity Dale

I was given this book to review by the Tyndale House Publishers.  If you would like to review for Tyndale, please go to : http://mediacenter.tyndale.com/X_TBN/6_Join_Network/Join.asp

I will be honest (because if nothing else I promise to be honest about what I read.)  This book was just okay for me.  I really enjoyed the stories and reading about how God can create something from the hearts of willing (and sometimes unwilling) people.  But it didn't have relevance to me.  This book strongly supports the church planting movement (which I absolutely agree with), but it wasn't what I expected.

Each chapter shares a different story and a different journey on the path to creating a successful church.  This book would be excellent for lay people, people disillusioned with church or those who are church planting.  It was a good read, but not one I would read over and over again. I wish I had alot to say good or bad, but I just feel- eh abo…

God Loves Me More Than That

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I was very excited to be offered the chance to review a few children's books.  I am not a homeschooling mama and that seems to me who gets most of the kids books to review. 

This book is a set in poetry form- very simple for younger readers.  Each page has a one line of the poem, so this is probably not a book for older children.  What makes this book stand out is the illustrations.  They are very detailed and beautiful.  The focus of each page is a young boy who is imagining and dreaming how big, how wide, how tall, how deep, how loud, and how soft God loves him.

This book is very sweet and would make a great gift for a young family member.  I am going to enjoy reading this book to my son over and over.


I reviewed this book for Waterbrook Multanomah.  The opinions in this review are mine alone.  Getting this book for free does not guarantee a good review.

God Gave Us the World

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This book was provided to me free by Waterbrook Multanomah.  I do not guarantee a postive review in return- the opinions below are mine alone.


The premise of this book is that it is a mother talking to her polar bear cubs about how there are all sorts of bears all over the world that do different things and eat different things than their own family. It has soft illustrations and is a sweet book for preschool and kindergarten aged readers.  The point behind the book- that God created a diverse world and although we are all different, we have all be created by God creates a very sweet story.

To be honest though, I was a little confused how the white polar bear was depicted as sleeping in a bed, eating food, and being very "modern", while the black bear, brown bear, sloth, and panda bears all sleep outside, are dirty, don't talk, and are- bears.  I found this a little odd, and to be honest, a little offensive. I know that the author didn't mean this at all- but the id…