Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Vibrant India by Chitra Agrawal

I so looked forward to receiving this book, but since it never came in the mail I had to go and borrow someone else's book to do this review.  I love India food, and I am a vegetarian--so to have this beautiful hardcover book full of fresh vegetarian recipes is a dream.

Chitra Agrawal shares from her personal background and upbringing to Brooklyn.  Readers will enjoy the book for its beauty.  Cooks will enjoy it for the fresh vibrant tastes that are included in this book.

As a vegetarian I was drawn to this, but even if you aren't a vegetarian you can enjoy this book and either just it as a way to add vegetables to your diet, or you can simply add your favorite meat the recipe of your choice.

I was to receive this book from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Grounded Hearts by Jeanne M. Dickerson

From the publisher:
In the midst of World War II, Ireland has declared herself neutral. Troops found on Irish soil must be reported and interned, no matter which side they are fighting for. When midwife Nan O’Neil finds a wounded young Canadian pilot at her door, she knows she’s taking a huge risk by letting him in. Not only is she a widow living alone, but if caught harboring a combatant, she’ll face imprisonment.
Still, something compels Nan to take in “flyboy” Dutch Whitney, an RAF pilot whose bomber has just crashed over County Clare. While she tends to his wounds and gives him a secret place of refuge, the two begin to form a mutual affection—and an unbreakable bond.
But Nan has another secret, one that has racked her with guilt since her husband’s death and made her question ever loving again. As Nan and Dutch plan his escape, can he help restore her faith?


This book has a great premise, and it is an interesting part of World War II that I haven't read about recently. I liked the idea of the book a great deal.

While the book was okay, I didn't find myself immersed in the story or really invested in the characters.  Nan and Dutch were good characters but I felt that there was too must focus on the sexual attraction.  Also, it seemed a bit redundant to always have the women using their bodies to get what they wanted to distract the men.  

I felt that the supporting characters in the book as well seemed a bit flat or characterized.  

It isn't a bad read, but just not what I was hoping for.

I received this book free from the publisher. All opinions are my own. 

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

The Weekly Prayer Project by Scarlet Hiltibidal

This is a beautiful book to hold and look through. There are 52 weeks, a whole year, of prayer projects.  The book goes through 7 different types of prayers: requests, gratitude, lament, intercession, faith, repentance, and awe.  I thought that was really great because it shows that not all prayer is the same and it is important to be able to seek and speak to God in different ways.

Another thing I loved was the each week is based in the Bible.  The Bible is what each week starts with. It shows where to start and then gives a brief paragraph of support before giving you a prompt an space to write out your prayers.  It is a simple exercise, yet one that can alter how you see scripture and how you pray.

Each two page spread, for each week, is beautiful and pleasing to look at. If you are a big writer you will want an additional journal to write in but this book is just beautiful and peaceful.

I received this book free from the publisher. All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Maggie Bright by Tracy Groot

There is something about Tracy Groot's writing that is spellbinding.  Honestly, it always seems to take me a chapter or two to get into her novels, but once I am in I am IN.  Tracy Groot writing makes you feel the intensity of the situation, even though this happened long ago.  You feel as if you are living in those moments, desperate to know the outcome.  What is so impressive about her writing is that she doesn't use all sorts of words to make you feel the depth of emotions.  She doesn't describe the carnage or romantic love or loss.  Instead, somehow as she tells her stories you feel all these things with a depth unusual for a novel.  Her writing is so on-point that you are seeing and living the experience without all the "fluff language" of other authors.

When I had to put the book down to do other things I found myself thinking about it and thinking about the history.  She makes me want to learn more about Dunkirk and about WWII.  

This beautiful and gripping novel is for any reader.  I love that Tracy Groot is a Christian writer and wrote this book in a way that I could give it to a non-believer and I know it would be a seed-planter.  Clare's words to Williams arrest your heart and stay with you.

While there are multiple characters they weave together in such a way that you are not distracted by them but desire them all to be well at the novels end.  You won't want to miss this book or any of her other previous books.

I received this book free from the publishers. All opinions express are my own.

Monday, June 12, 2017

Threads of Suspicion by Dee Henderson

From the publisher:
Evie Blackwell's reputation as a top investigator for the Illinois State Police has landed her an appointment to the governor's new Missing Persons Task Force. This elite investigative team is launched with plenty of public fanfare. The governor has made this initiative a high priority, so they will have to produce results--and quickly.

Evie and her new partner, David Marshal, are assigned to a pair of unrelated cases in suburban Chicago, and while both involve persons now missing for several years, the cases couldn't be more different. While Evie opens old wounds in a close-knit neighborhood to find a missing college student, David searches for a private investigator working for a high-powered client.

With a deep conviction that "justice for all" truly matters, Evie and David are unrelenting in their search for the truth. But Evie must also find answers to the questions that lie just beneath the surface in her personal life.

This is the second book in the Evie Blackwell cold case and I have to say that I missed some of the characters from the first book and was sad to not know more about them.  But the book quickly catches your attention and you become immersed in the stories.

As with the first book, what is interesting is how much tension and suspense Dee Henderson can create from a cold case. These are cases that didn't have an end and yet nothing more seems to have happened--but there is a lot of suspense and tension.  It's brilliant, really.

Evie is a wonderful and complex characters. I loved to read about her and how she navigates her professional and personal life.

This books are dark in a way that is hard to describe but Henderson handles it all well.

I received this book from the publisher.  All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Words of Grace by Jackqui Grace and Dee Arrand

This is a unique and delightful 28 day devotional book unlike any I’ve ever seen before.  Each day has a daily scripture, a short devotional relative for today’s women, a challenge and a coloring page.  As you color the page it is the reader’s time to reflect on the scripture. You then  apply the devotional to your personal life.  As you accept the challenge you pray over how you will bring that challenge to light in your interactions with others.  The daily passage is soothing, calming and uplifting.  The exercise of coloring as you reflect on the passage is a fun and meaningful way to spend time with God.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

The Glory of the Messiah – An adult coloring book by Susan Perlman and Shelly Skoropinski

The story of the Messiah is told in the pages of this unique coloring book.  It starts with the perspective of the Hebrew writings foretelling the promised Messiah.  Hebrew symbols are combined with Old Testament prophecies.  Then the fulfillment in New Testament scripture is given to tell this story.  Illustrations depict the prophecy promise on each page.  This is a great way to share the story of the Messiah with a friend.