Posted in Bible, Bible Studies, Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for LETTERS FROM JESUS

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About the Book

Book: Letters from Jesus

Author: Chris Palmer

Genre: Religion / Biblical Studies/History & Culture

Release Date: September 10, 2019

Letters from Jesus“In Revelation 2:2, Jesus tells the church in Ephesus something intimate—Google Street View intimate. He says, ‘I know your works’ (Oida ta erga sou). Four words don’t seem like much, but in the Greek, it packs a punch.… Jesus chooses the Greek word oida, which expresses total, comprehensive knowledge. It is intimate knowledge that comes from being up close and personal. This knowledge isn’t hazy on the details. It doesn’t struggle to remember. It preserves the particulars. In the mind’s eye, everything is sharp and clear, like a well-taken photograph.” —Chris Palmer

Letters from Jesus: Studies from the Seven Churches of Revelation explores Christ’s warnings to the seven most prominent churches in Asia Minor in the book of Revelation. These letters date back to 95 A.D., but they help us make a fascinating discovery about civilization: life hasn’t changed that much over the last two millennia.
Author Chris Palmer illustrates the truths contained in the Letters from Jesus using modern, everyday day examples. The host of the popular podcast Greek for the Week, he unpacks Greek words and phrases in these verses from Revelation with humor, joy, and biblical scholarship.

Why study Greek, even just a little bit? As Chris explains, looking at the New Testament in the original language in which it was written can offer us some beautiful insights into God’s Word. “It’s like reading the Bible in high definition,” he says. Also, “studying God’s Word in the original language forces us to approach it with reverence and awe, humbling ourselves to obey what it says, whether it’s something we want to hear or not.”

 

Click here for your copy.

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Letters From Jesus by Reverend Chris Palmer examines the book of Revelation and the seven churches Paul addressed.  As a Christian and the wife of a Primitive Baptist elder (preacher), I recognize the importance of learning Biblical history.  Having attended a church at one point where the preacher emphasized the study of Greek and the study of Revelation, I was pleased to have the opportunity to review this book.

His initial discussion of Koine Greek drew me back to a desire to study and learn Greek so I can interact with the original Biblical text in a more meaningful way.  I appreciated how he discussed how the Greek language allowed writers to arrange words in a way that emphasized the points they wanted to stand out.

I also appreciated how he reiterated the fact that the book of Revelation holds great relevance for us today.  I also appreciated his discussion of the number 7 and how the letters to the seven churches represented a complete message for the “entire” Church or all Christians.  I also appreciated how he provided insights into the geography and Church history of the time.

The way Reverend Palmer includes prayers for the week, an activity for the week, and Scriptures for the week encourages Biblical interaction and interaction with God as well. I also appreciated how he included Scriptures at the begining of each chapter that are presented in both English and Greek.

So if you are looking for a Biblcial study of the book of Revelation and the Greek language that is presented in a straight-forward manner, check out this book for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

Chris PalmerThe Rev. Chris Palmer is the founder and pastor of Light of Today Church in Novi, Michigan, and founder of Chris Palmer Ministries. He is host of the popular podcast, Greek for the Week, seen on several Internet platforms.

Chris began in full-time ministry in 2006 and began to preach internationally in 2009, helping many congregations grow, flourish, and expand. His desire for missions is to train and educate pastors, encourage congregations, support the vision of local church, and show the love of God to the culture. He has done this successfully for a decade in over forty nations of the world in Europe, Africa, South America, Asia, and the Caribbean, working with both traditional churches and the underground/persecuted church.

Chris earned a B.A. in Pastoral Studies from North Central University and an M.A. in Exegetical Theology, magna cum laude, from Moody Theological Seminary. He is a sought-after Greek scholar for his ability to make God’s Word come alive in a unique way from the Greek. Chris is often invited to present Greek and hermeneutics workshops at Bible and ministry schools. He recently began working on his Ph.D. at University Wales, Bangor, in the area of Johannine Literature, particularly the book of Revelation.

His previous self-published books include Living as a Spirit: Hearing the Voice of God on Purpose, The 85 Questions You Ask When You Begin a Relationship with GodThe Believer’s Journey, and Escaping the Haunting Past: A Handbook for Deliverance.

 

More from Chris

Experience the Bible in high definition and learn some Greek with fun, easy lessons from pastor/scholar Chris Palmer.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BhvbBaSbvuY

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 14

The Power of Words, September 15

Through the Lens of Scripture, September 16

Godly Book Reviews, September 17

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 18

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 19

My Devotional Thoughts, September 20

Mary Hake, September 21

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 21

For the Love of Literature, September 22

Retrospective Spines, September 23

Texas Book-aholic, September 24

A Reader’s Brain, September 25

A Diva’s Heart, September 25

janicesbookreviews, September 26

Inklings and notions , September 27

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Chris is giving away a grand prize package of a $20 Starbucks gift card, copy of LETTERS FROM JESUS, copy of HEBREW WORD STUDY!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter. https://promosimple.com/ps/e808/letters-from-jesus-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for The Key to Dreaming Again

 About the Book

Book: The Key to Dreaming Again

Author: Rick Unruh

Genre: Non-Fiction, Inspirational

Release Date: July 10, 2019

“We parked our car in front of Yankton’s Federal Prison Camp and walked through the doors of the control center. ‘I’m Rick Unruh, and I’m here to self-surrender,’ I told the corrections officer. There is no way I could comprehend what those words would mean over course of the next year, as God would begin a new work in me.”

Born and raised in a small town in Kansas, Rick Unruh was called to be in the ministry. But when he lost his mother to cancer despite her unwavering faith that God would heal her, it planted seeds of doubt in his heart. He served as a traveling evangelist for years but later faded away from the ministry.

He and his wife lost their house in a fire, but a year later, far worse pain was ahead when they[dori1] , lost their twelve-year-old son in an ATV accident. Just when it seemed there was hope and recovery ahead, Rick was blindsided by a federal investigation into a mortgage consulting group he’d been involved with. He was eventually charged and then sentenced to over a year in prison, embarrassed and sure that God was done with him this time. But God wasn’t finished.

This book is a testament to the God who restores us and allows us to dream again—if we will only surrender ourselves to him.

 

Click here to get your copy!

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As I started to read this book, I had no idea of the flood of emotions that would wash over me as I read the words.  But this book made me laugh in spots and cry in others.  Some of the stories involving Rick Unruh and his family were absolutely heartbreaking, such dealing with the death of loved ones.  Other stories such as the one about the lady who intentionally came to visit his mother in the hospital in a robe, nightgown, slippers, and curlers made me smile.  It reminded me of the fact that many of us go to visit people dressed up when the person we were visiting probably only cared about us actually being there and being present.

The stories told in this book of his own life and tales of his family and friends touched my heart.  The evidence of Rick’s faith is seen throughout the pages of the book.  If you want to read a book that will make you feel a variety of emotions, check out this book for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

Rick Unruh is a US MAPS missionary and is the founder of Dream Again Ministry. He holds a master’s degree in counseling from Logos University (Jacksonville, FL), with a special interest in grief ministry. He lives in Kansas with his wife, Tamela, and travels the country sharing his Dream Again testimony, a message of hope and finding our purpose. He recently added workshops for the church, helping them understand and minister to the grieving. Rick also recruits full-time missionaries to serve with MAPS.

 

More from Rick

I actually wrote the first chapter of my book in 2011 and then it just sat there until December of 2018.  I continually have had people ask me to write a book about my story, since I travel nearly every weekend sharing my story.   I could just never get the desire or focus to finish it.  After writing it, I realized, that I was hesitating because I didn’t want to go back to some of those places and dig deep, stirring painful emotions, just to write about them.  I would feel the anxiety building as I was getting closer to those moments. There is great healing in writing, but the early process of writing this book caused me to shed many tears.  But, if it can help others who are struggling with the loss of a loved one or a major setback in life, and bring hope and encouragement, then it has all been worth it.

Blog Stops

Through the Lens of Scripture.com, September 12

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 13

Simple Harvest Reads, September 14 (Author Interview)

Mary Hake, September 14

Betti Mace, September 15

Spoken from the Heart, September 16

Older & Smarter?, September 17

Genesis 5020, September 18

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 19

Texas Book-aholic, September 20

Blossoms and Blessings, September 21 (Author Interview)

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, September 21

janicesbookreviews, September 22

A Reader’s Brain, September 23

Just the Write Escape, September 24

Inklings and notions , September 25

Giveaway

To celebrate his tour, Rick is giving away a $25 Amazon gift card and a eBook copy of the book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/eb9b/the-key-to-dreaming-again-celebration-tour-giveaway

Posted in Bible, Bible Studies, Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews

Review and Giveaway for Hagar

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About the Book

Book: Hagar

Author: Shadia Hrichi

Genre: Religion / Bible Study

Release Date: October 10, 2017

You are ”The God Who Sees Me.”

Discover a close relationship with God–no matter the pain or suffering in your life. Witness the depths of God’s compassion through the eyes of Hagar, a runaway slave who meets the living God in a desert of despair, where she gives Him the name El Roi, ”The God Who Sees Me.”

Through this seven week study, you will find that when you surrender your life into God’s hands, your trials and triumphs serve a magnificent purpose: to draw you into the arms of the faithful God Who Sees Me.

”Deep and packed with surprising insights!” Francine Rivers

 

Click here to grab your copy.

 

Click here to download a free sample, explore Shadia’s video teaching sessions, or sign up for the online Bible study.

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Hagar is a seven-week Bible study that contains a lot of truths and worthwhile material.  I feel Shadia demonstrates her enthusiam for this subject throughout the pages of this book.  Each lesson contains a Scripture passage to read, background information, along with questions.

I personally loved how SHADIA HRICHI encourages her readers to use a Bible version they prefer instead of requiring the reader to utilize a particular version.  This decision encourages the reader to interact with their own Bibles which I like.

The book is broken down into daily lessons which helps guide the reader to spending time in God’s Word daily, which is another feature I like.  I also appreciate how the writing in this Bible Study is geared so anyone can read and understand what is being stated.

Hagar is one of those people from the Bible who I feel needs to be studied more.  I love the idea of Abraham and Sarah being sent into Egypt so they could bring Hagar out of that country.  I found it interesting to read the portions addressing the relationship between Sarah and Hagar.

The use of Biblical passages and Scriptural references caused me to think and draw my own conclusions rather than setting a hard line of what I had to believe.

So if you are looking for a Bible Study about Hagar, check this book out for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

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SHADIA HRICHI is a passionate Bible teacher, author, and speaker who has a heart for seeing lives transformed by the power of God’s Word. She has received a master’s in biblical and theological studies from Western Seminary as well as master’s in criminal justice from the State University of New York. Shadia is the author of several Bible studies, including HAGAR,Worthy of Love, and her latest study, LEGION, comes out in October. Shadia is often invited to speak at churches, conferences, and other events. Her insightful, witty, yet vulnerable teaching style reveals a compassion for the hurting, love for Jesus, and uncompromising commitment to the truth of God’s Word. Visit shadiahrichi.com

 

More from Shadia

Am I known? Am I loved? Am I home?

Every human heart is searching for the answers to these questions. Yet when pain and heartache enter our lives, we feel betrayed and cry out one question: God, do You see me?

The answer is yes. He is Behind the Seen.

Because we live in a fallen world, each of us will inevitably face hard times, even painful ones. Who among us has never seen or felt the fallout of broken homes, broken lives, or broken dreams? Hagar is a great example of someone who discovered God during a difficult time.

Maybe you have never heard of her. Or perhaps you came across her name in a study of the book of Genesis. But how much do you really know about this young slave girl? We often relegate her to the backstage as a minor character in God’s redemptive story. But was she?

As I explored Hagar’s story for another book I wanted to write, God continually amazed me as we journeyed together from the affluence of Egypt, into a life of slavery, to a desert of despair. It seemed the more I studied her life, the more I discovered about God. What began as a chapter evolved into a study all its own.

Two years and several thousand hours of study and prayer later, HAGAR: Rediscovering the God Who Sees Me came to be. Consider this book as your backstage pass to the life of Hagar.

I have never actually gone backstage during a live event, but I know that much more goes on behind the scenes than meets the eye. I invite you to come backstage with me and explore how God was involved in every detail of Hagar’s life. Her story has all the ingredients of a Hollywood tragedy: betrayal, loss, abuse, crisis pregnancy, abandonment . . . any of that sound painfully familiar?

Thankfully, Hagar’s story does not end in despair. God was working Behind the Seen—just as He has in your life and mine—all along. As a matter of fact, Hagar emerges victorious!

Hagar: an unsung hero if there ever was one.

Beloved, is the enemy using anything in your past to try to derail you from God’s plan, or hold you back from experiencing God’s joy to the fullest? Be assured, that is not how your story will end. Just as God did for Hagar, when He enters your story, victory is already assured.

So strap on your sandals and a grab a bottle of water. We’re heading into the desert. A place where we will rediscover the God Who Sees Me.

“The people who walked in darkness
have seen a great light;
those who dwelt in a land of deep darkness,
on them has light shone.”
—Isaiah 9:2

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 7

Books, Books, and Books., September 7

Inklings and notions , September 8

Stephanie’s Life of Determination, September 8

amandainpa , September 9

Emily Yager, September 9

A Reader’s Brain, September 10

Lights in a Dark World, September 10

Inspired by fiction, September 11

Genesis 5020, September 11

Robin’s Nest, September 11

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 12

Quiet Workings, September 12

Through the Lens of Scripture, September 13

Mary Hake, September 13

Godly Book Reviews, September 14

Rev. Rebecca Writes: Read, Write, Pray, September 14

Moments, September 15

Retrospective Spines, September 16

Batya’s Bits, September 16

Pause for Tales, September 17

CarpeDiem, September 17

Aryn the Libraryan ?, September 18

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 18

For The Love of Books, September 19

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 19

Texas Book-aholic, September 20

janicesbookreviews, September 20

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Shadia is giving away to TWO winners 1 book of Hagar, 1 book of Legion and a $50 gift certificate for leafwoodpublishers.com!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/eb32/hagar-celebration-tour-giveaway

Tour Reminders

Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Fiction

Review and Giveaway for Beautiful in His Sight

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About the Book

Book: Beautiful In His Sight

Author: April W. Gardner

Genre: Historical Romance

Release Date: May 11, 2019

It’s 1917, and Halifax is at war. Silas Quinn, street sweeper and army reject, remains on the home front, shunning God and society as religiously as they shun him. But the night he stumbles across a half-frozen prostitute, his eyes blink open, and his greater purpose is born: preserve and protect.

There’d been a day when shop girl Helen Fraser was desperate enough to believe a few nights in a brothel would cure her troubles. By some miracle, Major Jack Gordon deemed her worth saving, but Helen knows her meticulously recreated identity cannot last. What she doesn’t expect is for its destruction to come about, not by an old john or one of the madam’s goons, but by a force great enough to flatten a city and bury her alive.

Set against the backdrop of the Halifax Explosion, Beautiful in His Sight is a Christian historical romance that explores unequivocal grace and identity in Christ.

 

Click here to purchase your copy.

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Set during the time of World War I, this book caught my attention from the very first page.  Helen Fraser and Silas Quinn both lack God and purpose for their lives.  So when Silas happens to discover Helen, a prostitute half-frozen, things are bound to get interesting.

Helen, unable to forge a relationship with her half-sister, attempts to create some type of new life for herself thanks to Major Jack Gordon who helps establish a new identity for her.  But when a terrible explosion happens, Halifax is rocked to its core.

However, he has charged Silas Quinn with protecting Helen.  Silas determines to do exactly that by finding her and rescuing her from under a pile of rubble, ensuring she receives medical treatment, and even taking her to her half-sister’s home.

One of my favorite characters was Mr. Hermann.  This elderly German basically blind gentleman brings a lot to the story by providing Helen a job in his shop and basically treating her like family.  He demonstrated Christ’s love even when others were assaulting him because of the war.

This book was full of danger, excitement, and adventure along with hints of what could be between Silas and Helen.  If you want to find out how the story ends, check it out for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

APRIL W GARDNER writes history with a Christian perspective and a little imagination. She is a copyeditor, military wife, and homeschooling mother of two who lives in Texas. She writes Christian historical romance with a focus on our Southeastern Native Tribes. In no particular order, April dreams of owning a horse, learning a third language, and visiting all the national parks.

April loves to hear from her readers at: aprilgardnerwrites@gmail.com

 

More from April

The Story Behind the Story

My novels are never purely fiction. They are stories constructed around truth, around some segment of the past that’s both stunning and stunningly forgotten. My latest novel, Beautiful in His Sight, is set during the Halifax Explosion, a WW1 event little known in most of the world. For those in Halifax, Nova Scotia, in December of 1917, it literally shattered their world.

That’s the setting we find my characters Silas and Helen struggling to survive, but—as in every good romance—love (and God’s grace!) brings them through.

 

The Story Behind the Setting

By December 1917, Halifax had passed tens of thousands of soldiers and sailors through its railyard and onto the naval vessels in its harbor. With the military came the prostitutes who migrated in droves to the slums. It’s reported that some days, the only passengers disembarking from the trains were women in short skirts. Slumdom’s seams overflowed with carnality, public drunkenness, and solicitations. Prostitution wasn’t the only job to be had for women. With so many men wearing army green, ladies of the proper class and training stepped behind registers and bookkeeping desks and kept Halifax running.

This is the world in which we find our female lead, Helen Fraser, a reformed prostitute desperately trying to start over as a salesclerk.

 

The Story Behind the Explosion

As Silas, the story’s male lead, puts it, the explosion was “a tragic accident, a miscommunication between passing ships.” In short, it was a dozen small decisions that accumulated to one very horrific event. The collision and blast released the equivalent energy of 2.9 kilotons of TNT and instantly obliterated everything within a half-mile radius. The munitions vessel that exploded, the Mont Blanc, rained iron shrapnel all over Halifax. Its 1,160-ton anchor landed 2.5 miles away where it can still be found today.

The numbers: Over 2,000 deaths. Over 1,000 injuries. Almost 300 blinded.

 

The Story Behind the Name

The name Helen Fraser (female lead) is an honoring nod to Helen Clark, a courageous young woman who survived the explosion. This is her story.

Helen Clark, age eight, was beginning her school day at St. Joseph’s when she felt something disturbing. “Like thunder was taking place alongside of you,” she later said, “instead of up in the sky.” She looked to the window and gaped at the glass bowing inward. She flung her arms over her face and ducked an instant before it blew in. Then, in her words, “The ceiling above gave way at one corner and down two sides of the room, hanging like the flap of a great envelope and spilling out children from the room above.”

A nun grabbed her arm and said, “My heavenly God, the Germans have arrived! Get down on your knees girls.” In lieu of prayer, Helen wrenched away and jumped out the second-story window, narrowly missing the debris that, in the next moment, struck and killed the nun. A snow mound broke Helen’s fall. Suddenly very tired, she laid down right there, feeling no cold or pain, and went to sleep.

Eventually, two men approached to see if she was dead. Though she couldn’t speak, she managed to get to her feet. They straightened the bow on the top of her head and told her to go home if she had one to go to. The blood crusted over her eyes limited her vision, but she shambled along best she could, recognizing nothing. She knew her street only by the change to cobblestones under her feet, and her grandmother recognized her only by the bow in her hair.

Quick-thinking and bold, little Helen avoided both death and blindness, and I’m honored to name my heroine after her.

Blog Stops

Simple Harvest Reads, September 9

Emily Yager, September 10

Betti Mace, September 10

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 11

Avid Reader Nurse, September 11

Reading Is My SuperPower, September 12

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 13

Connie’s History Classroom, September 14

JosephineAnneWrites, September 14

For Him and My Family, September 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 15

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 16

A Reader’s Brain, September 17

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 17

Inklings and notions, September 18

CarpeDiem, September 19

Through the Fire Blogs, September 20

Bigreadersite , September 20

Inspired by fiction, September 21

Texas Book-aholic, September 21

janicesbookreviews, September 22

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, April is giving away a grand prize package of a $25 Starbucks gift card and a signed copy of her book!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/ec01/beautiful-in-his-sight-celebration-tour-giveaway

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Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Non-Fiction Books, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway for Waiting for God

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About the Book

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Book: Waiting for God

Author: Xochitl Dixon

Genre: Non-Fiction, Devotional

Release Date: August 7, 2019

Inhale God’s Word. Exhale in prayer. Rest in God’s love.

If your heart is weary and longing for answers—for healing, for provision, for miracles—Waiting for God renews your hope with strong biblical truth and encouraging Scripture-based prayer.

Conquer your fears and frustrations as you inhale God’s Word, exhale in prayer, and rest in God’s love. Live a life of deeper connection and immediate communion with God that can lead to contentment in His constant presence, no matter what your days hold or how long God’s deliberate delays may last.

Xochitl Dixon writes each chapter with heart-touching transparency and vulnerability, as she shares her own story as well as the stories of others who are trusting God through waiting seasons with no apparent end in sight. As a woman who lives with chronic pain, Xochitl understands constant struggle yet chooses to put God on the throne of her life.

 

Click here to purchase your copy.

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If you want a book that includes Biblical passages, Biblical stories, and personal stories wrapped up into one incredible package, check out this book for yourself.  This book made me laugh, cry, and more as I read the pages.  Let’s face it, at times all of us feel worn down and frustrated.  This book does an excellent job of showing how to face hard times with God’s grace and mercy.

The accounts of  Xochitl Dixon’s experiences with a chronic illness reminded me of my experiences with chronic high blood pressure and arthritis.  I could relate to what she had to say.  Her experiences with her mother dealing with cancer also resonated with me.  This book demonstrates that sometimes we just have to wait on God, but we can find people and experiences to bless us during those times.

The amazing way God often sends people to us at just the right time with just the right words or actions to lighten our burdens also resonate through these pages as well.

I found myself not wanting to put the book down.  So check it out for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

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Xochitl (So-Cheel) E. Dixon has a heart for loving God and people. She’s passionate about intercessory prayer, nurturing spiritual growth, and the prayerful study and application of Scripture. Through her daily struggles with chronic pain, due to an upper back injury she endured in 1992, she writes with transparency, ministers to the hurting, and inspires hope through worshiping God in all circumstances.

She serves as a regular contributor to Our Daily Bread (www.odb.org), a ministry devoted to making “the life-changing wisdom of the Bible understandable and accessible to all.” Her devotional, Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace (Discovery House Publishers) is available for pre-order and releases August 7, 2019. She is a contributing author for the upcoming Our Daily Bread devotionals: What Really Matters (August 7, 2019), And He Walks with Me (October 2, 2019), and Moments of Peace for Moms (October 2, 2019).

Her devotions have also been included in All God’s Creatures (Guideposts, 2019), God Hears Her (Discovery House, 2017), Our Help (Discovery House, 2017), and This Far by Faith: Legacies of the Black Church (Discovery House, 2017). Her nonfiction has been published in My Amazing Mom (Chicken Soup for the Soul, 2018), Second-Chance Dogs (Revell, 2018), LIVE Magazine (2019), and Church Health Reader (2019).

She followed God from California to Wisconsin and is enjoying Midwest adventures with her best friend and husband of over 25 years, Dr. W. Alan Dixon, Sr. She loves their sons, A.J. and Xavier, spoils her service dog, Callie, and likes serving as a speaker, traveling, photography, reading, singing, sketching, studying Scripture, and nurturing authentic relationships.

Xochitl connects with readers and shares encouragement devotions, prayer, and Scripture-based memes on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and on her blog at www.xedixon.com. You can also follow her Author Page on Amazon’s Author Central.

 

More from Xochitl

“Never pray for patience.”

My friend’s warning pricked at the back of my mind. Without realizing it, I began lacing my prayers with fear, doubt, and caution. I couldn’t risk being thrust into situations that would force me to develop patience, so I did everything in my power to avoid asking the Lord to help me be patient.

But even when I didn’t ask Him to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit in me, I always seemed to end up in circumstances that stretched my faith as much as my patience.

When my agent challenged me to write the book I had to write, I pitched Waiting for God: Trusting Daily in God’s Plan and Pace.

I thought I’d be sharing tips about how to persevere through trials and endure suffering with grace. But after I signed the contract and received a deadline for my manuscript, my husband received an unexpected job offer.

We followed the Lord from California to Wisconsin.

Writing became a challenge as I suffered a setback in my healing journey. I endured high levels of pain and fatigue. My husband and I struggled with frustration as we adjusted to life in the Midwest during one of the coldest winters in history.

And God changed my perspective on waiting for Him, which has nothing to do with patience.

I’ll be sharing my answers to the end-of-chapter questions on my blog (www.xedixon.com). I’m excited to invite you to join the adventure.

I look forward to growing with you as we wait for God, inhaling His Word, exhaling in prayer, and resting in His love as we trust daily in His plan and pace.

Blog Stops

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 2

April Hayman, Author, September 3

Genesis 5020, September 4

A Diva’s Heart, September 4

Through the Lens of Scripture, September 5

AndreaChristenson, September 6

Kelly Harrel, September 7

Mary Hake, September 7

For the Love of Literature, September 8

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 9

Just the Write Escape, September 10

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 11

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 11

Texas Book-aholic, September 12

A Reader’s Brain, September 13

janicesbookreviews, September 13

Inklings and notions, September 14

Cultivating Us, September 15

God is Love, September 15

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Xochitl is giving away a grand prize package of a $25 Amazon gift card, a signed copy of Waiting for God, and a copy of God Hears Her (Our Daily Bread 365-Day Devotional)!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/eaef/waiting-for-god-celebration-tour-giveaway

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Posted in Celebrate Lit Reviews, Christian Fiction

Review for Strands of Truth

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About the Book

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Book: Strands of Truth

Author: Colleen Coble

Genre: Suspense

Release Date: September 10, 2019

Harper Taylor is used to being alone—after all, she grew up in one foster home after another. Oliver Jackson finally took her under his wing when she was a runaway teenager, and now Harper pours her marine biology knowledge into Oliver’s pen shell research. But she’s never stopped wishing for a family of her own.

So when a DNA test reveals a half-sister living just two hours away, Harper is both hopeful and nervous. Over warm cinnamon rolls, Harper and Annabelle find striking similarities in their stories. Is it just a coincidence that both their mothers died tragically, without revealing Harper and Annabelle’s father’s name?

Oliver’s son Ridge still sees Harper as a troubled teen even all these years later. But when Oliver is attacked, Ridge and Harper find themselves working together to uncover dangerous secrets that threaten to destroy them all. They must unravel her past before they can have any hope for the future.

Suspense, romance, and generational secrets meld in this engrossing new novel from USA TODAY bestselling author Colleen Coble.

 

Click here to get your copy.

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Strands of Truth kept me on the edge of my seat the entire time I was reading it.  I found it difficult to put down and basically read the entire book in one sitting.  Harper quickly became a character I wanted to get to know and learn more about.  Orphaned on the day of her birth, she first lived with her grandmother and foster homes that both left Harper searching for someone to love.  Oliver, Harper’s mentor, and friend, became the perfect father figure for Harper, even though his own two children felt otherwise.  At first, I did not care for his son or daughter.

But as I kept reading and began to understand where Ridge and Willow were coming from in their opinions.  However, I never learned to like Ridge and Willow’s mother.  She seemed to be a cold and hard woman who basically poisoned the mind of her daughter.

Annabel, Harper’s half-sister, comes into the picture and I was glad they both had each other.  Annabel’s children, especially her son who was a police officer, added authenticity to this story.  He provided an interesting angle to what I was reading.

Trying to discover their father leads Harper to meet interesting people from her mother’s and Annabel’s mother’s pasts.  I wondered several times who was behind everything, but until almost the end I was not able to decide anything for certain.  The only thing I knew for sure was I wanted Ridge and Harper to become a couple.

This book is full of intrigue, danger, and suspense.  Why is someone trying to kill Harper, Oliver, and Annabel?   Who is behind the actual murder attempts?  The flashbacks to the past about

Truly, this is a book worth reading.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

colleen-coble-headshot-smallColleen Coble is a USA TODAY bestselling author and RITA finalist best known for her coastal romantic suspense novels, including The Inn at Ocean’s EdgeTwilight at Blueberry Barrens, and the Lavender Tides, Sunset Cove, Hope Beach, and Rock Harbor series. Connect with Colleen online at colleencoble.com; Instagram: colleencoble; Facebook: colleencoblebooks; Twitter: @colleencoble.

 

Read a Premium Excerpt

Suspense, romance, and generational secrets meld in this engrossing new novel from USA TODAY bestselling author Colleen Coble.

Strands of Harper Taylor’s childhood are resurfacing—but will the truth save her . . . or pull her under?

Harper Taylor is used to being alone— after all, she grew up in one foster home after another. Oliver Jackson finally took her under his wing when she was a runaway teenager, and now Harper pours her marine biology knowledge into Oliver’s pen shell research. But she’s never stopped wishing for a family of her own.

So when a DNA test reveals a half-sister living just two hours away, Harper is both hopeful and nervous. Over warm cinnamon rolls, Harper and Annabelle find striking similarities in their stories. Is it just a coincidence that both their mothers died tragically, without revealing Harper and Annabelle’s father’s name?

Oliver’s son Ridge still sees Harper as a troubled teen even all these years later. But when Oliver is attacked, Ridge and Harper find themselves working together to uncover dangerous secrets that threaten to destroy them all. They must unravel her past before they can have any hope for the future.

Suspense, romance, and generational secrets meld in this engrossing new novel from USA TODAY bestselling author Colleen Coble.

“Free-dive into a romantic suspense that will leave you breathless and craving for more.” –DiAnn Mills, bestselling author

“As always, Colleen Coble never disappoints. Strands of Truth is no exception. I was hooked from the first page. Trying to read this story slowly is impossible. Don’t be surprised when you find yourself flipping the pages in a hurry to find out what happens next! This one is for your keeper shelf.” –Lynette Eason, bestselling, award-winning author of the Blue Justice Series

“Colleen Coble’s latest book, Strands of Truth, grips you on page one with a heart-pounding opening and doesn’t let go until the last satisfying word. I love her skill in pulling the reader in with believable, likable characters, interesting locations, and a mystery just waiting to be untangled. Highly recommended.” –Carrie Stuart Parks, bestselling author of Formula of Deception

“Once again, Colleen Coble delivers an intriguing, suspenseful tale in Strands of Truth. The mystery and tension mount toward an explosive and satisfying finish. Well done.” –Creston Mapes, bestselling author

“Just when I think Colleen Coble’s stories can’t get any better, she proves me wrong. In Strands of Truth, I couldn’t turn the pages fast enough. The characterization of Ridge and Harper and their relationship pulled me immediately into the story. Fast paced, with so many unexpected twists and turns, I read this book in one sitting. Coble has pushed the bar higher than I’d imagined. This book is one not to be missed.” –Robin Caroll, best-selling author of the Darkwater Inn series

“It’s in her blood! Colleen Coble once again shows her suspense prowess with a thriller as intricate and beautiful as a strand of DNA. Strands of Truth dives into an unusual profession involving mollusks and shell beds that weaves a unique, silky thread throughout the story. So fascinating I couldn’t stop reading!” –Ronie Kendig, bestselling author of The Tox Files

Blog Stops

A Baker’s Perspective, September 3

Inspired by fiction, September 3

EmpowerMoms, September 3

Blogging With Carol, September 3

Book Reviews From an Avid Reader, September 4

My Devotional Thoughts, September 4

Christian bookaholic, September 4

KarenSueHadley , September 4

Book Bites, Bee Stings, & Butterfly Kisses, September 5

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 5

Susan Cornwell, September 5

Inside the Wong Mind, September 5

Godly Book Reviews, September 5

Through the Fire Blogs, September 6

Emily Yager, September 6

Older & Smarter?, September 6

Blessed & Bookish, September 6

Andrea Christenson, September 6

Babbling Becky L’s Book Impressions, September 7

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 7

Avid Reader Nurse, September 7

D’S QUILTS & BOOKS, September 7

The Becca Files, September 8

Blossoms and Blessings, September 8

Adventures of a Travelers Wife, September 8

Mary Hake, September 8

Spoken from the Heart, September 9

Betti Mace, September 9

Back Porch Reads, September 9

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess, September 9

Because I said so and other adventures in parenting. , September 9

Moments, September 10

All-of-a-kind Mom, September 10

For Him and my Family, September 10

Bloggin’ ’bout Books, September 10

Texas Book-aholic, September 11

Retrospective Spines, September 11

Daysong Reflections, September 11

Christian Bookshelf Reviews , September 11

SusanLovesBooks, September 11

Remembrancy, September 12

Worthy2Read, September 12

Just the Write Escape, September 12

Southern Gal Loves to Read, September 12

Bigreadersite , September 13

janicesbookreviews, September 13

As He Leads is Joy, September 13

Livin’ Lit, September 13

To Everything A Season, September 13

Simple Harvest Reads, September 14

Pause for Tales, September 14

For The Love of Books , September 14

Living Life Free In Christ, September 14

A Reader’s Brain, September 15

Quiet Quilter , September 15

Hallie Reads, September 15

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 15

Inklings and notions , September 16

By The Book, September 16

Real World Bible Study, September 16

Patiently Waiting, September 16

 

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Posted in Book Reviews, Celebrate Lit Reviews, Uncategorized

Review and Giveaway of Surf Smugglers

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About the Book

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Book: Surf Smugglers

Author: Melody Carlson

Genre: Historical Fiction

Release Date: August 15, 2019

In the summer of 1917, US troops join the allied forces in the Great War. Back in Sunset Cove, Oregon, other battles wage. Anna McDowell continues to fight old fashioned stereotypes as she runs a newspaper committed to truth. Despite opposition, she’s determined to expose ongoing rum-running and prohibition lawlessness.

Adding to Anna’s frustrations, her good friend Dr. Daniel seems to run hot and cold. He loves Oregon, and maybe Anna too, but he’s pulled by his East Coast family responsibilities. Even the lure of a new modern Sunset Cove hospital doesn’t seem enough to keep him in Sunset Cove.

Meanwhile, Anna’s strong-willed daughter Katy continues to develop her dress shop by inviting family friend Sarah Rose to help out. But the woman’s presence tests the small town’s tolerance. And Anna’s concern that her daughter is growing up too fast is confirmed when Katy’s romantic life takes an unexpected turn, which Anna fears is influenced by the pressure of a devastating war that is not only changing the entire world but Sunset Cove as well.

 

Click here to grab your copy.

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Surf Smugglers continues the story of Anna, Katy, Anna’s parents and other familiar characters from the earlier books.  It continues the story of a small community on the Oregon coast.  Including the effects of a world war, racial tensions, romance and more, I could not put this book down.  It definitely is worth reading.

Having read all the books in the series, I was glad to have the opportunity to read and review this story.  From the very beginning, Anna was someone who did not necessarily enjoy change.  Katy, her daughter, on the other hand, grabs life with both hands.

When I read the details of Katy’s classmate dying due to lack of proper medical care, my heart broke.  But the idea of having a hospital in the community made me happy.  To me, the hospital provided the right opportunity to keep the doctor in town.

So if you want to read a book filled with characters worth reading about, wonderful plot details and more check out this book for yourself.

I received a copy of this book for my fair and honest review.

About the Author

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Melody Carlson has written more than 200 books (with sales around 6.5 million) for teens, women, and children. That’s a lot of books, but mostly she considers herself a “storyteller.” Her young adult novels (Diary of a Teenage Girl, True Colors etc.) appeal to teenage girls around the world. Her annual Christmas novellas become more popular each year. She’s won a number of awards (including RT’s Career Achievement Award, the Rita, and the Gold medallion) and some of her books have been optioned for film/TV. Carlson has two grown sons and makes her home in the Pacific Northwest with her husband and yellow Lab dog.

 

More from Melody

My favorite way to learn history is through historical fiction—both by reading and by writing it. And I’ve discovered that World War 1 (previously known as the Great War, since WW2 had yet to happen) is quite fascinating. As well as incredibly sad. But I’m amazed at how science and technology evolved so quickly in this era. Whether it was an advancement in automotive, communication, medicine . . . the culture was rapidly changing. And the war pushed it along at an even faster pace.

Another factor that makes this era interesting is prohibition. Oregon, my home state and where I set my series, was one of the earliest states to adopt prohibition of alcohol—in 1914. As a result, Oregon became ripe territory for bootlegging and rum-running along the coastline. And because my series involves a small-town coastal newspaper that’s run (gasp!) by a woman, it gets even more interesting—and exciting!

Speaking of women, the suffrage movement was approved in Oregon in 1912—also well ahead of the rest of the nation (and the main reason that prohibition passed). My theory on why this happened is that the brave women who’d made the arduous journey West (via perilous wagon train or long hard voyages on clipper ships) were strong and opinionated and tough. And many of them were sick and tired of drunken slacker husbands. Also, thanks to Oregon’s amazing land donation act of 1850, many of these women were equal landowners to their husbands—and land equaled power.

Of course, what these suffragette-prohibition supporters didn’t realize is that banning alcohol would make matters worse because bootlegging and rum-running suddenly became a very lucrative business. The crime rate soared and the booze continued to flow freely. But all this makes for good newspaper stories, keeping our female editor in chief rather busy. In the first two books of the series, Anna McDowell has her hands full with trying to run her ailing father’s newspaper, restoring family relationships, and staying ahead of the growing criminal element in Sunset Cove.

By book three, Surf Smugglers, Anna has her feet under her and doing a good job of standing up to the criminal element in their region. But by now the Great War is really heating up and the United States must get involved. Of course, this means that many young men, as well as Anna’s very good friend Dr. Daniel Hollister, are being shipped overseas to serve. Meanwhile, there is plenty of trouble at home. And the rum-runners, who despise the newspaper’s support of prohibition, target Anna’s good friend Sarah Rose because she’s a woman of color who’s sought refuge from the big city . . . and naturally, things get dicey.

I’m currently finishing up the fourth and final book of the Legacy if Sunset Cove series, and I’m sad to think my ‘history lesson’ in this interesting era is drawing to an end. Not only have I learned a lot, but I’ve also really come to love the McDowell family . . . and I’m getting worried that not all the men from Sunset Cove will survive the brutal war. Of course, this is fiction . . . but the war was very real and the losses were great. Unfortunately, it wasn’t the war to end all wars like they’d hoped, but I appreciate the sentiment . . . and continue to pray for world peace.

Blog Stops

The Avid Reader, August 31

Connect in Fiction, August 31

Among the Reads, September 1

She Lives To Read, September 1

Through the Fire Blogs, September 1

For Him and My Family, September 2

Truth and Grace Homeschool Academy, September 2

Just the Write Escape, September 3

Patiently Waiting, September 3

Blogging With Carol , September 3

CarpeDiem, September 4

Betti Mace, September 4

Christian Bookaholic , September 4

Reflections From My Bookshelves, September 5

Wishful Endings, September 5

Remembrancy, September 5

Maureen’s Musings, September 6

Abba’s Prayer Warrior Princess , September 6

Bigreadersite , September 7

Happily Managing a Household of Boys, September 7

It’s Story Time With Van Daniker, September 7

Connie’s history classroom , September 8

For the Love of Literature, September 8

Hallie Reads, September 8

Moments, September 9

Simple Harvest Reads, September 9

FOR THE LOVE of Books , September 9

Locks, Hooks and Books, September 10

Pause for Tales, September 10

To Everything A Season, September 10

Retrospective Spines, September 11

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, September 11

Texas Book-aholic, September 11

Older & Smarter?, September 12

Library Lady’s Kid Lit, September 12

janicesbookreviews, September 13

A Reader’s Brain, September 13

Inklings and notions , September 13

Giveaway

To celebrate her tour, Melody is giving away the grand prize of three of her books: Harbor Secrets, Riptide Rumors, and Surf Smugglers!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

https://promosimple.com/ps/e982/surf-smugglers-celebration-tour-giveaway

 

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